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Italy is contemplating a legislation aimed at preventing sharenting in order to safeguard the privacy of children.

Italy is taking a stand against the practice of sharenting, where parents share photos and videos of their children on social media without considering the privacy implications. A draft bill introduced by a two-party coalition on March 21, 2024, aims to safeguard children’s online privacy and their rights to their own image.

Understanding Sharenting and Italy’s Intentions

The proposed legislation, inspired by a similar French law, seeks to regulate sharenting to address the security risks and psychological impact it can have on minors. Serena Mazzini, a social media strategist and bill contributor, emphasized the need to prioritize children’s privacy amidst the viral nature of social media.

Mazzini’s research revealed that parents in Europe share an average of 300 photos of their children each year, often seeking to profit from their content. The proposed law challenges this by requiring parents to declare and, if profitable, redirect earnings from sharing their children’s images to a dedicated bank account accessible to the child when they come of age.

Concerns extend beyond privacy violations, with studies showing the potential for child identity theft and exploitation through online sharing. Tech companies are also being urged to enforce stricter guidelines to combat oversharing.

Italy’s Proposed Measures

Italy’s draft bill, endorsed by Green Europe and Italian Left, aims to regulate rather than ban sharenting practices. It emphasizes the need for parental consent and financial transparency in sharing children’s images online.

Additionally, the legislation addresses the psychological impact on children, offering a “right to be forgotten” provision allowing individuals to seek erasure of online content related to them after turning 14. This initiative reflects a growing recognition of children’s digital rights and the consequences of parental oversharing.

While the bill is in its early stages, with other proposals in the works, Italy’s efforts signal a positive move towards enhanced child data protection in Europe.

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