‘You have BLOOD on your hands’: Senator Lindsey Graham slams Mark Zuckerberg for ‘having a product that is killing people’ as Facebook boss claims ‘there is NO LINK between social media and negative mental health’

Social media bosses were told ‘you have blood on your hands’ when confronted with the dangers their platforms pose to children.

The heads of social media giants Facebook, TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat are being grilled by the US Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg was sworn in before lawmakers on Wednesday, along with the four other tech titans.

Twitter’s Linda Yaccarino, TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew, Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel and Discord’s Jason Citron will also testify.

Senator Lindsay Graham opened the session with a stirring rebuke of all five tech bosses, accusing their platforms of killing young people, but took aim at Meta.

“Mr. Zuckerberg, you and the companies before us, I know you don’t mean it, but you have blood on your hands,” he said.

‘You have a product that is killing people. When we had cigarettes killing people, we did something about it – maybe not enough.

“You’re going to talk about guns, we have the ATF… (but) there’s nothing here, no one can do anything about it (social media), you can’t be charged.”

Bosses of social media giants Facebook, TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat are being questioned by Congress about the dangers their platforms pose to children

Senator Graham said internal Meta emails showed Zuckerberg had been warned about the dangers of his apps but decided not to hire 45 people to “better monitor this.”

“So the bottom line is you can’t be sued. “It should be, and these emails would be fine for damages, but the courtroom is closed to every American who has been abused by all the companies before me,” he continued.

He said social media was the last sector he would grant blanket immunity from liability to, and that it was time to repeal laws that did so.

The tech leaders have been convened by the US Senate Judiciary Committee, where they will be asked about the effects of social media in a session titled ‘Big Tech and the Online Child Sexual Exploitation Crisis’.

The hearing could be tough for executives who face political anger for not doing enough to thwart online dangers to children, including those from sexual predators.

‘There are no instruments to hold the company accountable. Instead, survivors and advocates should implore these companies to put safety over profit,” said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, head of the Judiciary Committee.

Zuckerberg said he was proud of the work his teams have done to improve children’s online safety, not just on our services, but across the internet.

Shou claimed that the average number of American TikTok users was more than 30, but admitted that many children were using the platform.

Before their testimony, Meta and X, formerly Twitter, announced new measures to deal with any political opposition.

Meta, which owns the world’s leading platforms Facebook and Instagram, said it would block direct messages sent by strangers to young teenagers.

By default, teens under 16 can now only receive messages or add to group chats from people they already follow or are connected to.

Meta has also tightened content restrictions for teens on Instagram and Facebook, making it harder for them to view posts that discuss suicide, self-harm or eating disorders.

More to come.