Charity in online ads warning


CyberSafe Scotland has said it is important that parents think about their children being targeted by online advertisers

3rd September 2019 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

A charity has warned that children are being targeted by online advertisers.

Online video giants YouTube launched a platform for young people last month, despite recently being fined $200 million for violating children's privacy after data was collected from under 13s.

And CyberSafe Scotland has said parents need to be aware of ad targeting to ensure that children’s experience of growing up is not limited.

A statement on the charity’s Facebook page said it is important that children have access to wide information in the digital age.

"Some parents tell me that in their own lives they quite like targeted ads, why should we be so concerned about them when it comes to our children?,” the statement said.

"The best analogy I can give you is this… Imagine every day from now to adulthood your child goes to a library and they spend large amounts of time there.

"But when they are there despite the massive array of books the only books the librarian ever lets them look at are books about Minecraft. They may well be delighted! They may never see a science book or a penguin classic, a cookery book or a book about languages.

"They may never read about history, or geography, Spanish or sport. They will almost certainly know a bucket load about Minecraft. But if this happens long term through their lives, day after day, week after week, month after month - their experience of the world growing up will be limited.

"The pressure on you to educate them widely outside of their online experience will actually be increased. They will increasingly, subconsciously, associate with particular products, brands or viewpoints."

More information on how to control what adverts your children can see is available on the charity’s Facebook page.