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Facebook won’t be directly monetizing Messenger Kids, automatically migrating kids to real accounts when they turn 13 or collecting data so that it complies with Children’s Online Privacy Protections Act (COPPA) law.
But the app could prime kids to become lifelong Facebook users, and lock their families deeply into the platform where they’ll see ads.
In June, The Information reported Facebook was working on an app for teens called Talk, though that’s a bit different than this pre-teen Messenger Kids app.
While Facebook said in the briefing that the app was designed for kids age 6 to 12, younger kids are allowed on, too.
Messenger features like location sharing and payments have been stripped out, while the Kids version of Giphy won’t let you search for things like “sex.” Facebook actually manually selected a set of GIFs that kids can use rather than relying on a third-party startup to tag things well enough.It found that kids had the right hardware but the wrong software; 93 percent of 6-12-year-olds in the U. have access to tablets or smartphones, while 66 percent have their own device, and three out of every five parents surveyed said their kids under 13 use messaging apps, social media or both.But these apps weren’t built for children’s privacy, and instead allow adult strangers to contact or follow kids.When children turn 13, they won’t instantly have their Messenger Kids profiles turned into real Facebook profiles, nor will they get kicked off Messenger Kids.They’ll still have to build a traditional Facebook account from scratch when they’re ready.