US may ban social media apps with infinite scrolling, addictive autoplay videos

Popular apps including Snapchat, Facebook and YouTube may come under fire if the US government agrees to pass a bill that seeks to ban apps exploiting human psychology.

According to The Guardian, the Social Media Addiction Reduction Technology (Smart) Act is a proposed bill that targets techniques and features which encourage and deepen addictive behaviours.It specifically seeks to prohibit practices including infinite scrolling as seen on Facebook newsfeed, autoplay videos such as those on YouTube, and badges or awards linked to engagement such as Snapstreaks. Republican Senator Josh Hawley who has proposed the bill argues that the companies behind such apps are using psychological tricks to keep users hooked.