Organizations Accuse YouTube Kids Display Advertising “Disguised”

The YouTube Kids came in February to meet the demand of parents concerned about the exposure of children to inappropriate videos for children. But the charm seems to have lasted little: a group of organizations is accusing Google of commercially exploit the excessive and unfairly service.

 

Among these organizations are the Consumer Watchdog (defending consumer rights) and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. The group sent a letter to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC, the acronym in English) to report the problem and request action.

With 60 pages, the document explains that the advertising material appears in an integrated manner to legitimate content. An adult is able to realize such an approach, but a child does not. In the view of organizations, parents use the YouTube Kids to keep their children away from inappropriate content, but unknowingly end up leaving them exposed to materials that stimulate interest in brands and products.

One of the main problems reported are the videos of “unboxing”. Many of them show YouTubers taking packing toys and newly purchased electronics. So far, there is nothing wrong. The point is that, according to the group, many of these videos have direct relationship with manufacturers or stores, without this connection becomes clear. It is supposedly the case of channels as DisneyCarToys and HobbyKidsTV that appear on YouTube Kids.

There are also complaints about videos that look “normal” but have strong commercial appeal. The document cites a channel created by McDonald’s to explain the origin of their products. According to the organizations, this type of material promotes disguised way mark.

The FTC did not say whether it will still accept the complaint and initiate investigations. Anyway, Google has already ruled on the case: the company says it has developed YouTube Kids based on the guidance given by child protection groups and is always open to dialogue to improve the application.

Currently, the YouTube Kids is available only in the United States.

 

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