Electronics

Facebook launches app for young users

Facebook launches app for young users

The company is offering the new app called Messenger Kids for those users who are too young to use Facebook due to the age limitation of the site.

The Messenger Kids app can be controlled by a parent from their Facebook account and it has been co-developed by Facebook with parents, experts as well as kids.

There already are a handful of other apps that children can use with parental consent, and kids can communicate with each other using texting on cellphones.

Once parents download the Facebook app to their child's iPad, iPod Touch or iPhone, they will authenticate it with their Facebook account.

Kids will not show up in Facebook search results, so if a kid wants to chat with a friend, the parent will have to work with the friend's parent to get them both approved.

After that, parents have to provide their kid's name.

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Facebook's existing Community Standards apply to Messenger Kids, the company says, but beyond that, specialised "reviewers [for Messenger Kids] will also look for other signs of potential abuse and take appropriate action, whether it's removing specific messages or entire accounts for repeated abuse".

There will also be "a library of kid-appropriate and specially chosen GIFs, frames, stickers, masks and drawing tools lets them decorate content and express their personalities". " said Loren Cheng, Product Management Director, Facebook". "This is by far the most clumsy part of Messenger Kids", TechCrunch reported.

"My concern is safety, getting friend requests from people you don't know, chatting with people you don't know, giving out information to strangers", one parent participant in the National PTA roundtable said. The spokesperson said that Facebook will continue to update the enforcement of its policies depending on the types of content that Messenger Kids users report.

Messenger Kids is only available on iOS, but will launch on Amazon and Google app stores in the coming months.

The move seems created to lure kids to the app before they try Facebook rival Snapchat, which is popular with teens.


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