Group fights to ban smartphone sales from kids 13 and younger

Colorado voters may consider ban on childhood smartphones

Colorado voters may consider ban on childhood smartphones

But how young is too young to constantly be connected to social media, apps and texts messages on a smartphone? PAUS, apparently serious despite its difficult-to-take-seriously name, is proceeding with a ballot initiative in Colorado that seeks to ban smartphone sales to preteen children, citing their potentially addictive nature and possible health ramifications.

Being a doctor and all, Farnum did some research into the plausible effects of smartphone use on the brain - and now he's ready to cut kids off from their beloved iPhones or Galaxies.

A Common Sense Media report found the number of kids who had used them nearly doubled between 2011 and 2013, while an Influence Central study revealed kids get their first smartphones at an average age of 10.

The ban would require cellphone retailers to ask customers about the age of the primary user of a smartphone and submit monthly reports to the Colorado Department of Revenue on adhering to the requirement. Those who do sell a smartphone for use by kids could be fined $500 after a warning. "If you tell them to watch the screen time, all of a sudden the fangs come out".

The group needs to collect 300,000 signatures to put the issue before Colorado voters next year. Critics largely state that it is a parent's responsibility to limit their child's phone usage, and that typical childhood temper tantrums aren't an acceptable reason to create new costly and burdensome legislation. "I know there have been different proposals out there regarding the internet and putting filters on websites that might put kids at risk". John Kefalas, D-Fort Collins, told The Colorodoan.

"Ultimately, this comes down to parents ... making sure their kids are not putting themselves at risk", he said.

Be Civil - It's OK to have a difference in opinion but there's no need to be a jerk. Major critics of Farnum's proposal say that although the dad's intentions are good, the law could be a huge encroachment into private family life.

Indeed, prolonged cellphone use is not recommended-the American Academy of Pediatrics last fall updated its guidance on media use among children.

Current US guidelines suggest parents limit screen time for children under six to no more than one hour per day of "high quality" programming, before increasing this over time.

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