Our letter to the APA
This letter to the American Psychological Association, spearheaded by the Action Network, describes how psychologists and other user experience (UX) researchers working for the consumer tech industry use persuasive technology to increase children's use of social media and video games, how this fosters children's overuse of screens, and how research demonstrates a connection between screen overuse and children's mental health struggles and poor academic performance.
The signatories recommend that the APA: call on psychologists and the tech industry to disclose their use of persuasive design, especially in digital products used by children; issue a formal public statement condemning psychologists' role in designing persuasive technologies that increase children's time spent on digital devices; and take strong actions to educate parents and schools about the use of psychological persuasion in social media and video games, and inform the public of the harms of children's overuse of screens.
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