Facebook Launches A Kids' Version Of Messenger

Facebook Launches A Kids' Version Of Messenger

IT

Facebook announced on Monday it was trialling Messenger Kids in the U.S., a standalone app aimed at children under 13 to chat with friends and family, controlled from a parent's main Facebook account. So if a child wants to be able to chat with one of their classmates, their parent must first friend that kid's parent, and then will see the option to approve that adult's child as a contact for their own kid.

The Messenger Kids app can be controlled by a parent from their Facebook account and it has been co-developed by Facebook with parents, experts as well as kids. Once this is done, the kids can start chatting with the contacts that are approved by their parents.

For the first time, Facebook is opening up to children under age 13 with a privacy-focused app created to neutralize child predator threats that plague youth-focused competitors like Snapchat.

'Facebook told me they would come back with ideas to PREVENT underage use of their product, but instead they are actively targeting younger children. This will not create a Facebook account for your child or give them access to your Facebook account.

We put the Messenger Kids' proactive safety filters to the test and found that they weren't efficient enough. Even so, Balkam said millions of kids under 13 are already on Facebook, with or without their parents' approval.

"Probably like most parents, I recoiled I horror at this announcement but on reading more, I'm sold", said Anne-Marie O'Leary, editor in chief at Netmums. On the other hand, 84% of online adults in the USA aged 30-49 used Facebook in 2016, up from 79% in 2015, according to Pew Research Center.

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"Stay away from my kids please Facebook and act responsibly!" The Facebook Messenger Kids app comes with parental controls that make it easier for the parents to control who their kids can talk with.

Facebook announced a new messaging service yesterday for children as young as six.

The messages sent by the kids from the Messenger Kids app will be received by the recipients through the regular Messenger app.

He said: 'Not sure this is the right direction at all.

"We need to prepare our children for the day when we're not there and we do that gradually giving them more and more responsibility as they get older and we do it by talking about them and by spending time with them - putting those boundaries in place". " said Loren Cheng, Product Management Director, Facebook".

  • Kyle Warner