International · Law · International norms

General comment No. 25 (2021) on children’s rights in relation to the digital environment

Objectives:

The General Comment provides guidance on legislative, policy and other measures to promote, respect, and fulfill all children's rights in the digital environment.

Scope:

In the General Comment no. 25, the Committee on the Rights of the Child takes stock of the growing importance of the digital environment “across most aspects of children’s lives”, assessing the risks and benefits it carries (para 3). The diet-related regulations that are the focus of FULL are mentioned as part of the section on “health and welfare”. The General Comment highlights the risks of exposing children to the marketing of unhealthy food and beverages in the digital space.

The General Comment stresses that States “should regulate targeted or age-inappropriate advertising, marketing and other relevant digital services to prevent children’s exposure to the promotion of unhealthy products, including certain food and beverages, alcohol, drugs and tobacco and other nicotine products. Such regulations relating to the digital environment should be compatible and keep pace with regulations in the offline environment” (para 97).