Though the company has yet to decide on whether to go through with the proposed plan, this move could invite more scrutiny over privacy and security to Facebook, as they have been battling criticisms over such issues.
A probable reason why Facebook is thinking about allowing children below 13 to have an account is because of advertising. Some companies and other ad firms are trying to target this age range of individuals for their products and services.
Mary Bono Mack, a member of the US Congress said, “In developing this new technology, Facebook needs to proceed with an abundance of caution.”
The head of the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee that is responsible for privacy issues added, “Very strict privacy protocols must be in place before younger children are allowed on social-networking sites. Before this happens, Facebook also has a responsibility to expand its efforts to educate parents and preteens about the dangers of cyberspace and how to use the Internet and social networking in a safe way.”
Last May 2011, Consumer Reports said that a survey showed that Facebook has 7.5 million users who are aged 13 below in the year prior to that. About 5 million of these are under 11.
Facebook said in a statement, “Many recent reports have highlighted just how difficult it is to enforce age restriction on the internet, especially when parents want their children to access online content and services. We are in continuous dialogue with stakeholders, regulators and other policymakers bout how best to help parents keep their kids safe in an evolving online environment.”
Would you allow your preteen children to join Facebook?
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