The US Federal Trade Commission to review COPPA

The US Federal Trade Commission is to review the operation of the COPPA rules. That’ll be interesting. And it is definitely important, globally speaking.

I think it is fair to say the last time the FTC looked at how the rule was working in practice they concluded it wasn’t brilliant but, given the available technology, they couldn’t think of anything better. However, as age verification systems developed and improved, they also acknowledged that their views on its use could change.

Age verification technology has improved dramatically in the past ten years but so has our understanding of how children fare in the complex and highly commercial environment  of the internet.

We all need to think about what, if anything, we can do to influence the outcome of this review. We have 90 days to make a submission.

For reasons that had nothing to do with children’s best interests and everything to do with politics, when the European Union looked at this, during the passage of the GDPR, they made a complete and utter hash of it.

About John Carr

John Carr is one of the world's leading authorities on children's and young people's use of digital technologies. He is Senior Technical Adviser to Bangkok-based global NGO ECPAT International and is Secretary of the UK's Children's Charities' Coalition on Internet Safety. John is now or has formerly been an Adviser to the Council of Europe, the UN (ITU), the EU and UNICEF. John has advised many of the world's largest technology companies on online child safety. John's skill as a writer has also been widely recognised.
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