How to implement COPPA-compliant push notifications in your kids app

Push notifications are a useful tool for re-engaging users and getting kids back into your app. Under both COPPA and GDPR-K, sending push notifications to kids is deemed collecting personal information, similar to an email address, and therefore requires an appropriate level of parental consent to enable.

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What every game developer needs to know about getting parental permissions right

If you’re building a game or app for kids (under-13 in the US or under-16 in Europe), you need to consider how you’re going to manage age gates and parental permissions. Both are essential to ensure compliance with data privacy laws (COPPA and GDPR-K), but both are complex user flows and mismanaging them can create barriers to engagement for your easily-distracted young audiences.

Here’s what you need to remember:

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5 things game developers need to know about COPPA and GDPR-K

With 170,000 kids going online for the first time every day, developers have to consider them a likely audience for their games, even if they are not deliberately child-directed. Data privacy laws for children such as COPPA (US) and GDPR-K (EU) are now well known, but the lack of clear guidance on how to apply them can make publishing such games difficult and scary for developers.

Here are five things to keep in mind if you’re developing apps or sites for a children’s audience OR which might be accessed by children:

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Announcing our kid-safe alternative to YouTube’s video player for kids and family publishers

Social plugins are one of the biggest unintentional harvesters of children’s personal data. Every time a child loads a web page or app which has a social widget, it’s gathering vast amounts of personal information about their activity. YouTube’s video player is one of the biggest examples of this.

Lacking any real kidtech alternative, YouTube is the default embedded video player used by family and kids publishers and brands – but the data it collects on its under-13 users is now being viewed as a violation of COPPA. A coalition of over 20 child advocacy, consumer and privacy groups recently filed a complaint with the FTC accusing YouTube of enabling the collection of personal data on millions of children across the US.

Today we’ve announced a solution to this problem: a fully kid-safe (COPPA and GDPR-K compliant) embeddable social video player.

Already delivering millions of video views, our embeddable video player is part of the PopJam Connect platform, which also provides tools for kid-safe social engagement for content owners and brands.

The player integrates PopJam’s award-winning kid-safe social features, enabling children to safely engage with content. It can be customised by the publisher, with a self-serve dashboard to create, schedule and report on video and social content, and to organise video playlists. It also features optional kid-safe monetisation options.

Our CTO Joshua Wohle, said “There are over 170,000 children going online for the first time every day and the kidtech ecosystem is growing equally quickly to make the broader internet compatible with this new audience. Publishers have been starved for kid-safe social and video options that are designed for the under-13 audience.”

To find out more about how we can deliver kid-safe video content on your platform, please contact us.

Five lessons from the report showing thousands of Google Play kids’ apps are in breach of COPPA

An academic study published this week reveals that thousands of kids’ apps are collecting and transmitting personal information to third parties, in possible breach of COPPA (and soon, GDPR-K).

 The research from academics at the University of California at Berkeley is the most comprehensive ever done to assess the data collection and sharing practices of the most popular kids’ games and apps, and the results were covered in The Guardian and elsewhere.

It demonstrates how hard it is to comply with COPPA using existing ad technology built for the adult market, vs kidtech that is based on zero-data collection.  And it usefully highlights the lack of common frameworks and standards between the regulators, the app stores and developers.

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The GDPR-K Toolkit for Kids Publishers Part Six: Obtaining verifiable parental consent

Europe’s new data privacy law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will be enforced from May 2018.  This law obliges all companies with consumers based in the EU to enable new data privacy protection. For websites and apps whose audience is primarily kids, additional requirements apply, commonly known as GDPR-Kids (GDPR-K).

Part Six of our comprehensive GDPR-K Toolkit covers collecting data and obtaining verifiable parental consent.

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The GDPR-K Toolkit for Kids Publishers Part Five: Kid-safe user acquisition

Europe’s new data privacy law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will be enforced from May 2018.  This law obliges all companies with consumers based in the EU to enable new data privacy protection. For websites and apps whose audience is primarily kids, additional requirements apply, commonly known as GDPR-Kids (GDPR-K).

Part Five of our comprehensive GDPR-K Toolkit covers acquiring new users and leveraging cross-promotion.

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