Groups Seek Expanded Coverage of Child Online Protections
Urge FTC to include ITV, online gaming in revision of law
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 7/1/2010 12:26:20 PM
That came in comments filed Wednesday, the deadline for input to the FTC on whether and how it should change its enforcement of the law. The commission periodically reviews the law.
Additionally, the groups want to change the definition of "personal information" collection to include cookies, IP addresses, geo-location and even anonymous age, zip code and gender information which they say can now be used to identify Web surfers.
They also want the commission to develop separate privacy protections for children older than 13.
Among their recommendations are for the FTC to 1) apply to COPPA criteria it used for a 2008 report to Congress on food marketing to children--for example, defining a site directed at children as one with 20% or more traffic from ages 2-12; require "major" websites, ad net, social networks and others to periodically report to the FTC about data collection practices; investigate "safe harbor" programs and make operators reapply; and investigate whether blanket parental permissions are being used to engage in "ongoing data collection and personalized marketing."
"Interactive TV, mobile targeting and online games are major new threats to children," said Center for Digital Democracy Executive Director Jeff Chester. "Congress mandated the FTC to protect children's privacy--and it needs to ensure ITV and other new digital media comply with COPPA. The FTC should also help the FCC better tackle how ITV raises privacy concerns for both children, teens and adults."
Others signing on to the comments include the American Academy of Pediatrics, Consumer Federation of America, and Consumers Union.
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