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Facebook Still Has a Big Problem with Underage Users, and They Know It

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Facebook Still Has a Big Problem with Underage Users, and They Know It
[ Social Media]

Facebook policy strictly prohibits anyone under the age of 13 from operating an account. As you’re probably well aware, plenty of kids under the age of 13 operate Facebook accounts. That’s because people are allowed to lie on the internet, which must be shocking to you, I know.

That doesn’t mean that Facebook just lets it happen, however. Although some reports have estimated that 40% of the Facebook users under the age of 18 are actually under the age of 13, Facebook continues to remove accounts beloning to underage kids every day. Some estimates put the number of daily removals at more than 20,000.

But it’s a huge game of whack-a-mole. Where one underage account is terminated, a hundred pop up in its place. And Facebook knows they’re impotent.

Do you think Facebook should abolish the age limit? Do you have kids under the age of 13? Do they operate Facebook accounts? Let us know in the comments.

Speaking at the Oxford Media Convention recently, Facebook policy director in the U.K. and Ireland Simon Milner discussed the social network’s problem policing their no kids under 13 rule.

“We haven’t got a mechanism for eradicating the problem [of underage users],” he said. He went on to call the problem “tricky.”

“Facebook does have a rule that users have to be over 13, as does YouTube, which not a lot of people know. It is not because we think that Facebook is unsafe but because of a US law about children’s online privacy. So we have it as a global rule.”

Milner is of course referring to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), an old law that details how minors’ personal data can be accessed and shared. The FTC recently announced some additions to COPPA, which they say will strengthen the law. Since the law was enacted way back in 1998, it makes sense that they would feel the need to update it for the digital age where social networks, apps, and other internet properties are snatching information at every turn.

The FTC’s proposal is a whopping 169 pages long, and makes a couple of extremely influential changes to the law. In our previous coverage of the FTC’s announcement, Zach Walton described the changes as such:

The first is a definition change that files geolocation information under a child’s personal information. The change means that services can not track a child across various Web sites and other online services.

In the same vein, the second update extends privacy protections to modern Web applications apps, games and Web site plug-ins. The latter is the most interesting because some Web sites appeal to people both young and old. These plug-ins can be used to track the adults, but what about the children? How will a Web site know who’s a child and who isn’t?

Of course, Facebook is one social provider who has taken issue with the “plug-ins” addition. Their ubiquitous “like” button, which appears on pretty much every website you would ever visit could be affected. They claim such regulations could “chill innovation.”

But back to Milner, who went on to say that the most obvious mechanism, an age check, is impractical:

“It is increasingly difficult to know what to do. You can’t make everyone prove their age – that would get privacy advocates up in arms.”

He’s right. Facebook’s real names policy catches enough flak – can you imagine what kind of hell Facebook would catch for some sort of true age verification system? Let’s say they attempted something like that anyway – damn the dissidents. It would be pretty much impossible, or at the very least a resource-hogging nightmare. So, short of implementing a long, resource-intensive age verification system that would probably infuriate everyone, what’s Facebook going to do?

One idea that’s been thrown around is to simply open up the site to kids under the age of 13 – but with a load of restrictions. Those restrictions, in theory, would allow parents to control their young childrens’ accounts and would do more to make sure their info stayed private on the site. The rumor first started floating around back in June of 2012, which led to privacy groups demanding that Facebook better give parents ultimate control over privacy, if they chose to let in sub-13-year-olds.

Facebook responded, saying,

“Enforcing age restrictions on the Internet is a difficult issue, especially when many reports have shown parents want their children to access online content and services. We welcome today’s recommendations by consumer, privacy, health and child groups as we continue our dialogue with stakeholders, regulators and other policymakers about how best to help parents keep their kids safe in an evolving online environment.”

Two congressmen joined the party, sending Facebook a pointed letter.

“At this point, we have made no final decision whether to change our current approach of prohibiting children under 13 from joining Facebook,” said the company nearly six months ago.

Currently, Facebook still requires members to be at least 13 years old, and there are still plenty of 10,11, and 12-year-olds on the site. The Guardian quotes a study that says 34% of 9-12-year-olds in the U.K. have Facebook accounts.

And those kids face the same kinds of danger that even older kids and teens face on social media – scammers, bullies, criminals. Just yesterday, a U.S. Appeals Court ruled that convicted sex offenders cannot be barred from operating Facebook accounts, as it’s unconstitutional to deny them such a ubiquitous form of communication. I happen to agree with the ruling, but I’m sure there are plenty of parents out there who, upon hearing a headline like that, immediately imagine their children being preyed upon.

The bottom line seems to be that young kids are going to find a way onto Facebook, Facebook is currently powerless to stop it, and the only real option seems to be to just let them in officially, and try to give parents control over their experience on the site. You know, if you can’t stop them, at least try to make it super safe.

Do you have any ideas? Just let them join in an official capacity? Age checks? It appears that Facebook is kind of stumped. Let us know in the comments.

Facebook Still Has a Big Problem with Underage Users, and They Know It
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  • John

    Give parents control? They are the morons in most cases letting their kids on FB . . . They are the same parents screaming about their kids being exposed to outside influences. They can’t figure out how their 7 year old CHILD with a smart phone/tablet or a computer in their bedroom with internet access is having this happen.

    • DTM

      I agree in many senses with John. There are parents who set up the FB accounts for their 7 year olds; there are parents who get them smart phones, and computers. And they allow the 7-olds to use them unattended in their rooms. There are also parents that go and get nanny-software to block and monitor their kids but expect that it is some magic bullet that will do all the monitoring so they do not need to be involved.
      There are many parent who fear computers (yes, still today)and think their kids know more about them then they do.
      And those Parents are morons…
      But that is not every parent…
      The issue comes down to how can you control it and enforce it –
      Changing Laws is not going to help – because there is NO reasonable way to enforce them – Has the CANN SPAM ACT of 2002 stopped SPAM? No, has barely made a dent on SPAM. All it has done is made legitimate business who send stuff regularly to customers conform to the law costing them more.

      Not sure I am a fan of the Kumbayah approach of Paul – but yes the solution is parents need to be involved, get involved and not be afraid to spare the rod when appropriate
      Move that computer to the family room – Take away the smart phone
      some of the pictures these kid post of themselves are really not age appropriate – that would not happen if the only place to do it was in front of Mom and Dad (at least most – back to the some parent are morons)

      My Dad and Mom had an awesome response to the “but My friends parents got them a…; or allow them to… or My friends get to…” it was simply “I am not them” And today I hear my Dad’s voice echo in my head as I say that to my kid.

      In my opinion the solution is to open it up to allow parents to create sub-accounts for not just their under 13 children but all their children.
      Why and how does it help?
      1) It reduces the need to lie about ones age to get an account
      With that FB and others has something they can work with – they can put in controls that allows or prevents what is shared! As it stands now whether the kid have accounts set up by their parents or have simply lied about their age to begin with, they have the accounts anyway. AND that will not change.
      2) It is reasonable and does not put any additional burden on anyone. Well yes, parents you do have the burden to raise your child and be involved but guess what you have that anyway!
      3) Parents who are involved will enforce “the rules” – Some Parents who are involved will (if given the ability) “report” suspect violations of others as well.

    • Joanne

      I have reported a 9-10 year old twice.. All fb has to do is check with her school. Gave that information too.. Parents need to be blocked from facebook, when they allow and set up an under age account.. All face book, does, when you report a violation, is block YOU from the account… I have niece and nephew, age 10,, there mother set up the account.. Reported that and they are still on fb.. Go after the parents…An adult site, is for adults, kids don’t need to be looking at what adults say and do..

  • http://cozumelmexico.net Robert Rodriguez

    There are a myriad of reasons why Facebook AND parents have little or no control over what these kids are doing. Unless you are going to lock all of them in a room and deprive them of all computers and devices AND watch over them 24/7; these kids will find a way to “hook up” with their “friends”. If they are befriended by Jack the Ripper, or Lester the molester, parents and FB will have no way of discriminating either.

    Everyone knows the reality. Computers are influencing our youth in ways that we haven’t even begun to understand. And this trend will continue to skyrocket. The only way to control usage would be with locks on computers that are activated by an AFIS (automated fingerprint identification system) or something along those lines. And even that is not 100% foolproof.

    • John

      My problem is that there are so many parents that make NO effort at all. . . Many parents make accounts on social sites for their 7 year old. Of course that isn’t always the case but I feel it happens a lot.

  • http://www.NaturalDogTraining.INFO Paul Anderson

    The only, and the best protection is a functional family life, where children feel valued and valuable, where their emotional needs are met by their parents and close family, and they are not only spoken to, but listened to. Children who are heard by parents who have time for them and whose needs and opinions matter do not have to go looking elsewhere.

  • Brad

    Hey Facebook,

    What about letting parents “sponsor” their child/children’s accounts. In much the same way as businesses set up a fan page and then a facebook user must administer that page, use the same philosophy for underage accounts. If a child wants an account, it must be established by the parent, where the parent would act as administrator of the child’s account, and therefore would be able to view any and all content/messages/private messages, etc. With a “parental/guardian sponsor”, children would not be able to create an account. As far as everyone over the age of 18, scanning and emailing a driver’s license or some other form of identity would not be so far out of the question to prove age. so many online services require it, so why not something as widely desired and used as Facebook? this may not be the answer, but it is worth exploring and modifying to protect children from themselves online!

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Brad,

      So you’re willing to scan your driver’s license to prove who you are then? If so, please scan and post here, so we can all see who you really are.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/facial-exercises-anti-ageing Allan Philip

    I think kids under 13 years. should be allowed on Facebook but should only sign on under the parent account, by creating a sub account. The parent account should be the main account with the kids sub-accounts. Obviously the parent could remove or add a sub-account. The parent account will be able to monitor the sub-accounts attached to it and simple give the sub access to the main account if so desired. This is an easy programming change and the family account could be offered to parents immediately.

    • Mandy

      This sounds do-able!

    • Brandon

      That would be ideal, but it is no more feasible than requiring they be under 13. In fact, it is for the exact same reason: HOW do you tell if they should be under a “parents” account, and how do you tell if that “parent” is even actually their parent? Without dental, DNA or birth records, there is no possible way to regulate it.

  • Mandy

    Technology is spiraling out of control. It’s on the TV, it’s in the schools, and it’s in casual conversations. Our children see all the fun stuff they can do on computers, iPODS, tablets, laptop computers, etc. and they want to be a part of it. It’s challenging for a parent who IS interactive with their children to always say no because the child is too young, to which they reply their friend’s parent allowed it. Challenging! And challenging for program developers who are also concerned with children’s wellbeing. There’s no way to control end users, you can only hope for the best. I wouldn’t mind if my young children had Facebook accounts … IF …. IF I could monitor it and be the administrator on my child’s account. It still won’t be 100% safe, but it would be safer than it is now.

    So if you can allow me to have parental control, perhaps their account under mine, then I say yes.

  • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk BlokeToys

    It *should* be a parents responsibility to monitor their child’s internet use and activities. It’s good that FB proactively acts to prevent this, and I think their age limits are reasonable and should be continued.

    But this does not mean that parents have no duty of care here!

    When did it become so common for parents to be freed of all their parental responsibilities!? The internet is a wild and chaotic place, and parents cannot jus shirk their responsibilities and place blame for everything at the doors of someone else.

    If your child is accessing FB – or any other site on the internet – when they are under age, IT IS YOUR FAULT for allowing that to happen, just as it would be your fault as a parent if your kid got hooked on smack, took up smoking, started drinking or mugging old ladies in the street.

    Enough with all this wimping out! It is the sole job of a parent to instil their children with the right morals and the right attitudes, to educate them and to keep them safe. People can blame the internet, friends, movies or music all they like, but it ALWAYS come back to the failings of the parent who couldn’t be bothered to explain the dangers, or didn’t care that their kid was talking to a 50 year old pervert, or never bothered to learn how to install a basic monitoring program.

    I think it’s time people started facing the truth here – your kids are YOUR responsibility, not the responsibility of FB, or any other site on the internet.

    • Ryan Kempf

      I like this comment because it makes sense

      • Mike

        I also like this comment. It hits the nail right on the head. As a parent my youngest (9 yrs) is begging me almost every weekend if he can have a FB account and I keep explaining to him that – that will be one of his 13th birthday gifts.

    • Brandon

      While I agree with you in spirit, putting all of the responsibility on the parents is not going to solve anything, nor is it even feasible. Our children are influenced by us for 4-8 hours out of the day, at best, and are influenced by teachers, friends and everyone else in the world the rest of the time. I don’t care how “good” of a parent you are, you cannot protect them from everything every time. It’s not about wimping out – it’s about reality.

      You also assume that we are always smarter and more tech savvy than our children. I work in the industry and am still amazed at what my kids learn at school (via friends, mind you, not teachers… but that is a whole other discussion). With all of the technology and learning resources on the internet, both positive and negative, it is everyone’s’ responsibility to protect children, NOT just their parents.

      • DTM

        It does not matter whether you are more tech savvy than your kids – you are more world savvy than they are and you do know better than they do.
        but 90% of the parents who say this to me are wrong thier kids are not more tech savvy then they are – thier kid are just tech fearless and are not affraid to try this to see what happens and do not really care if they happen to cause a problem bring the device down for days or forever… parents on the other hand too technology timid.

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Finally, the one who truly “gets it”.

      You’re right, a monitoring program is typically less than $50, and you can find a quality one via a quick search. We did that once in our office when our receptionist was screwing off more on myspace than actually working. We installed a “tracker” that monitored each keystroke and web address entered and emailed reports on the same.

      If you’re a parent, even if the software cost $200, one would think that it would be a wise and prudent investment if you care about what your child does.

      That said, something of that sort should NOT be an excuse to not monitor your child’s daily activities firsthand.

  • Tim

    It seems to me that Facebook could solve a whole host of privacy concerns if they simply set the highest privacy settings possible as the default for a new account. Then a person, including a child, would have to manually allow any of their information to become public.

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Tim,

      Do you really think that would stop an enterprising 13 year old?

  • Pierre Hardy

    Yes, I’ve 3 kids, all where on FB before 13. The rule (deal) was : “OK, you can be on FB, but I must be your friend (and now your parent)”.
    FB should set a different security rule set for kid between, lets say 10 to 14 or 16. For example not appearing in search, and to get new friends, you should know the ID or email or … by another way, …

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Pierre,

      Good idea, in theory, but the issue would be how to enforce (not appearing in search). Your second issue of knowing a person’s user name or email eliminates itself, because no one can find you if you don’t appear in search (which includes looking up one’s screen name).

  • Casey Fryer

    Totally agree with sentiments about it being parents’ responsibility and the ideas of having childrens accounts under parents – my children share their accounts with their grandparents (e.g. nanand…./papaand – was a good ploy to get Mum and Dad more internet savvy) but we who are concerned are the converted aren’t we?
    I have thought and thought about it and I wondered whether upon applying for an account, ID and photos also need to be submitted, but then that could possibly be breaching privacy – unless members know this is the requirement upon opening an account?
    That way genuine users only would be able to sign up?
    So many things are too easy to do on the Internet these days.
    I wish the Facebook team all the best with this as it is important to protect our little ones, given the lax attitude some parents do take. It’s well and good saying how they should be acting but we live in an imperfect world and the simple truth is that some children are not being looked after well enough, and Facebook provides this service so its in their best interests to come up with something foolproof without deterring members.

  • Stuart Falconer

    I think the best way to address this is to let under 13 sign up to Facebook and other social media and then hopefully, kids won’t feel the need to lie about their age to gain access. This may just enable vulnerable kids to be protected better.

  • http://www.brightpathdigital.co.uk Steve Masters

    I think Facebook should retain the age restriction but that it shouldn’t be too aggressive about policing it. The limit should be a guide. I know loads of kids on Facebook under 13 – my own included. If the parents are responsible and they ensure privacy settings are there and they keep advising the child, then Facebook shouldn’t do more than just be as responsible as it can.

    Removing the age restriction altogether would give them impression Facebook doesn’t care and encourage everyone to believe it is safe. Having a restriction demonstrates that care should be taken.

  • Conrad

    I know parents who open accounts for their 3 and 4 year old kids. Do these people actually know why they are doing that ? For whose benefit ? So they can post photos of their kids literally spilling the beans? I would not know why a 4, 6 or 10 year old should need or have a social media account on a platform that is geared to adults and that has a lot of easily accessible – let me put that diplomatically – semiadult content. It would make more sense to have a social network for kids – the under 13 or even under 16 – and another one for adults. And why should there be a problem to require a legally binding statement from each account holder that he is 13, 16 or 18. Many other sited require that too without being called to order by “the authorities”.

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Conrad,

      Congratulations, you’re the first person to attempt to make sense.

      The issue at hand is that an adult is legally defined in most states as one over the age of 18, it is simply not possible to bind a minor to a contract, of any kind, even one such as the flimsy user agreements that are of the variety found in social networking.

      You can “require” what you wish, but if the documents are not legally binding, then that’s a whole ‘nother problem.

  • Mike

    Not to piggy-back or create any similarities, but do what Yahoo does. In order for a minor to have an account the parents have to put in their info. This is just to ensure that a parent is around when they create the account. Or better yet, as stated before, have a sub-account. This way the parent can control how the child’s information is being utilized. If you notice in the Privacy Settings on FB you can have pictures, and other information either going out to “everyone”, “acquaintances”, “friends”, or “family”. And there is an area where you have “Who can look me up?”. Again there is the choice mentioned above. There are a lot of ways that kids can be safe, just have the staff at FB roll out the sub-account and I believe this can be handled.

    • Nick

      I agree with Mikes point… the parents are “theoretically” IN CONTROL of what the kids can and can’t do until they are 18. The parents should have to approve the facebook account with another layer of privacy until they are at least 16. True 16 is not much further then 13, but kids at 13 are still infants in alot of peoples minds. The individual countries governments should do something about this. Facebook got this big on its own merits, they should be WHOLLY responsible for the policing of ages.. If this doesnt happen then the responsibility turns to government as they must be policed by someone.

      • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

        Nick and Mike:

        Bull crap. Do you remember when you were 13, or are you so old now that you forget how enterprising and creative you were then?

        So you, the parent, create the account with Junior. What’s to stop Junior from going back and tinkering with all the controls?

        As was said to Mabuzi, Facebook is a WEBSITE. It is NOT a person. It’s not like the bouncer at the bar checking ID’s. A WEBSITE has no way to know if you are lying. So Mom and Dad create the profile. Big deal. Go to the local library and log in. Go and make a second account. Need Mom’s credit card? Go ahead and snatch it from her purse and make a copy of the numbers.

        The article itself even states people LIE on the internet. That might come as a shock to some, but it happens. There is quite literally NO way to determine actual ages online. It’s hard enough for bars to keep track of fake ID’s used to buy beer, much less this kind of thing.

        Additionally, if ANYONE thinks the government is going to step in, think again. The government can pose and posture, but in the end, they SHOULD be more concerned with such minor inconveniences like fixing the economy or unemployment, rather than spending time with the nationally vital Facebook.

        It’s amazing how the majority of people always want less government in their lives, but the very first solution to any difficult problem is always “the government should regulate it!” Sure, Facebook is vital to national security, and Facebook was ultimately responsible for the death of Osama bin Laden, and it was Facebook that finally got the economy under control, but just because it was Facebook that was responsible for everything good that has happened in the last 25 years doesn’t mean that we should be having our government regulate it.

        Is this what we have come to as a country, have the government regulate everything we can’t figure out a solution to in ten seconds? Should the government regulate how much money you make at your job or how many times you have sex with your wife and in what positions? Let’s have the government regulate the kind of house you live in and the kind of car you drive. Then, the government can regulate the clothing you wear and the kind of jobs you can have. Finally, the government can fulfill it’s long-term fantasy and regulate the internet, stifling freedom and commerce forever.

        Winning!

  • http://Mabuzi.com Mabuzi

    Between all the under age users and by far worse all the fake accounts which may be around 60% of all accounts, no wonder the share price dropped.
    I agree with the sentiments above, if this is an issue turn up the privacy controls.
    Why 13? Is 13 not as bad as 16? Are 16 years old’s any wiser than 13?

    This is FB’s problem it needs to fix.

    They already know all about you and your connections and YOUR CONVERSATIONS, so they could spend a little more profit on policing the conversations.

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Mabuzi,

      Do you have any evidence to support the numbers you throw out so casually in your comment, or do you just pull a number out of the air, because you think it will make you sound impressive?

      Facebook skirts a VERY thin line by forcing people in their user agreements (which no one bothers to read, because literacy is so not needed in the real world) to agree to sell everything on the site to Facebook at no cost, but if they literally monitored each and every conversation, first off, the staff increases would be enormous, and two, then people really would be up in arms about privacy.

      Is it Facebook’s problem? Actually, NO, it isn’t. It’s the problems of the PARENTS who don’t bother to monitor their kids, and let Junior do what he wishes with no supervision. Go ahead and see that R rated film. I don’t care. Watch a porno. Who cares? I’ll buy you that copy of Hustler. Here’s a cell phone and unlimited minutes, feel free to call whomever. Make sure you call while you’re driving THE NEW CAR I bought you!! Of course, you’ll need gas, so here’s the $50K limit credit card in your name.

      People love to spread blame, but no one wants to take responsibility. If you had CONTROL of your 13 year old, they wouldn’t BE on Facebook to begin with.

  • http://www.isocialpet.com Marian Baranowski

    Facebook should find a way to stop underage sign ups…is it now parents sign up for their kids or Kids sign up themself.

    This kids are easy pickings for child molesters or worse.
    Make are charge of $1per every sign up, to pay by credit card for each and every one.( Name of signed up person must be on the Credit Card ) Underaged wont have a sign.
    Facebook wont loose any sign ups because of the $1 charge but it will stop this from happening

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      Marian,

      If you think people will pay to be on Facebook, you are sorely mistaken. That’s besides the fact that Facebook boasts that they will never charge to use their site.

      If you think that will somehow stop underage signups, you must not have been very resourceful at 13.

      • lynnette

        true

  • DT

    Apple has the same policy for itunes. What are they doing to ensure that their users are over 13?

    • http://www.covetus.com tomwatson

      hello..i m very exixited to join this webpronewz.com..:)

  • KS

    It’s sad to read all this comments, when no one sees the biggest problem of all here….and that is no restrictions for ANY facebook user.
    If it was in interest for FB stuff to have real persons behind all accounts they would implement their ID checkup with copy of passport or driving licence etc….but I leave that to future and FBI checkup.

    Of course, in that case, they will drop from over 1 bilion users to 200 milion in less than a month…just as their stocks will in very near future.

    That poor website would have much more sense if at least 50% of people behind profiles wouldn’t be just fake or duplicate profiles…let a long other 30% of real voyeurs, exhibitionist, criminals, drug users, pedophiles and idiots without real life contacts.

    I really don’t see any difference in using FB for underage or adult person whatsoever. Because let’s face it, FB website doesn’t have any sense or purpose at all.

    I rest my case. Byebye

    • http://www.sfpincchicago.com sfpincchicago

      KS,

      You cannot possibly be advocating that people freely post their drivers license and/or passport and/or other similar documents online. Please say that is not what you are an advocate of.

      Besides the fact that such a measure would cripple the internet as a whole (not just Facebook or social networking), but it would likely be borderline unconstitutional.

      As if identity theft was not a big enough problem, and as if Facebook, and every single other application online wasn’t selling every tiny shred of information you have (willingly, vis a vis the terms of service of every single website in existence) allowed them to sell, for the sole purpose of having their “trusted third party websites” (trusted, in this case meaning, “we trust them to pay us money when we sell your name and every other piece of information you agreed to let us share when you logged online”) send you mountains of spam forcing you to maintain a constantly-growing blacklist so you don’t have to delete the junk yourself.

      Even something as simple as forcing someone to show identification to use a credit card turns off about 90% of users as it is. Yet, identity theft and credit card theft/abuse/??? is also skyrocketing. The notion of “I am going to NOT sign my credit card, I will force them to check my ID” is the height of ignorance. Please. Feel free to NOT sign your card. It makes it SO much easier for ME to sign it when I, the guy who picks your pocket, finds your credit card. I thank you, dumbass, from the bottom of my heart. I now have your credit card, address from your driver’s license, your social security number (both from your driver’s license AND from your social security card, which you have so conveniently kept in your wallet for me. What more can I want? Yet, people think the internet is “safe”. Bet you the house that no one bothers to read those “terms of service” from all those “fun” websites where they “promise” to “keep your information secure”, with the exception of aforementioned “trusted third parties”.

      Social networking doesn’t NEED ads to make money. Zuckerberg, et al, all make money by selling you like the piece of meat you are.

      That said, you claim 50% of profiles are “just fake or duplicate”. Is that some kind of actual fact, or are you just pulling numbers out your arse to make it sound as if you know what you’re speaking of? You also claim statistics of 30% “of real voyeurs, exhibitionist, criminals, drug users, pedophiles and idiots without real life contacts”. Again, is there anything to support these numbers, or are you just trying to sound like you know what you’re talking about when you haven’t a clue? Do you work for Facebook that you got these numbers? Facebook doesn’t even know what their numbers are, so how do you, KS?

      You claim “FB website doesn’t have any sense or purpose at all”. It has a purpose. Advertising to targeted groups, social networking, presumably others. If you don’t like or don’t care for what the website offers, that’s fine, but don’t pretend like it has no purpose for the mere reason that YOU do not find a purpose. To claim such is once again a display of naivetĂ©, if not outright ignorance.

      “I rest my case. Byebye” What case, exactly, did you make? You haven’t supported any numbers or statistics you threw out, and your ignorance of the purpose of networking online is clearly on display, so please explain what “case” you made that you need to rest? What precisely did you do or state? Are you saying that you want to not live online because in order to use your “hotmail” or “yahoo”, you need to show your passport? Log in to your “hotmail”, but first type in your driver’s license number, and your social security number and passport information so we can prove your identity. Now, go to Amazon and buy that book you wanted. Wait, we need to verify your identity. Please send us your credit card statement, social security number and passport, along with a driver’s license, so we can verify your identity with the government. Yes, it’s a $5 book, but we need your social security number to proceed. Go to ebay and bid $0.99 on something, but before you can bid, we need your passport, social security number, driver’s license, credit card statement, and a birth certificate.

      If your goal, KS, was to sound ignorant, then goal achieved.

  • Val

    Hi
    I think from the age of 13-16 Facebook should have a section just for that age & that age group shouldn’t be able to get into the adult section. I don’t know if something like that is possible. In doing that you could control the younger ones. That’s about the best I can come up with.

    Good luck.

  • Pamela

    It seems to me that there are to meany people wanting to enforce there opinions on others. I see nothing wrong with kids being on face book. My grandchildren are on face book my son and i monitor what they post. Last time i looked this is still the land of the free.

  • David B

    My 11 year old has Facebook and Twitter accounts, the rules are simple, my wife and I are allowed to follow her and there is no blocking, keep it all open and no secret accounts. Her rule is we don’t comment online as that would spoil her cred.

  • http://www.sscwindowcleaning.com Adriano

    I think as long have a parents supervision have no problem.

  • http://www.tipsinablog.com Danny

    Where I live they have been giving the stats on the number of Murders, rapes, etc that started from interaction on social sites.

    At first I was a little surprised by the numbers,though, the reality is that, the real numbers are said to far worse, only many incidents such as rapes, were heavily under reported…..

    So for so many minors to be so active on these sites, there will be a need for parents to keep an eye out for any suspicious signs……and take action before any damage is done….

  • http://www.essaysexperts.net Pitzer

    The parents and even teachers in school should take an active role in ensuring that the children are well controlled and of good behavior.

  • Frida

    Not very easy to respond. If parents agree and can control their kids’ Facebook-accounts, then I think that -with an explicit permission of the parents- underaged kids may have an account. On the other side, how could parents control every move of them in Facebook? Let’s say for instance that the kids find some porn video and post it on their wall, not including their parents and/or others who they want to hide the post from, parents wouldn’t know. Unless parents open “fake accounts” in order to control them, what isn’t allowed by Facebook (although many people have more than one fake account).

  • jodi peters

    Facebook does not remove the under age users. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve reported under age kids and they still have a facebook acocunt. They are quite lame.

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