Children On The Internet: Big Name Sites Breaking The Law?

Desktop PC ChildIf you’re like me, you want your children, or in my case grandchildren, to use the Internet, become familiar with it’s benefits, and thereby better compete in the cyber-future world in which they’ll be living. So we monitor, as best we can, what sites they visit and preach Internet safety to them in hope that they won’t be exposed to its ugly underbelly.

That said, I recently came across a New York Times article reporting a potential violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, which “requires Website operators to obtain verifiable consent from parents before collecting personal information about children under age 13. But, in complaints to the F.T.C., the coalition says six popular Web sites aimed at children have violated that law by encouraging children who play brand-related games or engage in other activities to provide friends’ e-mail addresses — without seeking prior parental consent.”

The children are being asked to send in photographs of themselves, play brand-related games, sending in their email addresses, and referring friends to the websites. All without prior parental consent; and all allegedly in violation of the law (COPPA).

The article states: “The sites cited by the advocacy groups include McDonald’s HappyMeal.com; Nick.com, the Nickelodeon site owned by Viacom; General MillsReesesPuffs.com; SubwayKids.com; another General Mills site, TrixWorld.com; and Turner’s CartoonNetwork.com.” Not to be dropping names or anything, but these are some big companies! Big companies who are allegedly breaking the law that protects our kids!

Keep an eye on what your youngsters are doing on the Internet by placing the computer they use to access the Internet in a room other than their bedroom. A good location would be a family room where other members of the family, including you, spend time and can observe their activity. See Protecting Our Kids On The Internet and Protecting Our Kids On The Internet: Using Parental Controls on this blog for more information and tips.

Reference: New York Times article

As always, I appreciate your comments on this subject…so please do. And be careful out there…it’s extremely dangerous these days.

Don’t miss an article. If you enter your email address in the Email Subscriptions box on the right column of this page, I’ll send you an email when a new article is posted. I don’t share your email address with anyone…no one; I hate spam too. Please share my site with your friends and family. Thanks.

Home computing is a blast…keep it safe, productive and enjoyable.

Best regards,

Paul

lubicp(at)yahoo.com and @paulsinternet on Twitter.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under In the News, Internet, Internet Security, security

2 responses to “Children On The Internet: Big Name Sites Breaking The Law?

  1. You could certainly see your expertise within the work you write. The sector hopes for more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. Always go after your heart.

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s