Look around the next time you are at a store or in a restaurant. Have you noticed how many small children are now using mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets, in addition to using computers? Despite their youth, or maybe because of it, it seems that young children have a natural ability to navigate devices and the Internet. Yet, much of the content on the Internet is geared towards adults, not children. This presents a dilemma for parents as they try to monitor and limit the accessibility of unsuitable content for small children. It’s also an ethical problem faced by marketers. Just how old should children be to become aware of marketing, and how should companies approach this sensitive market?
To help with the dilemma is a brand new app from Google, called the YouTube Kids app, built specifically for young children to use. The new app makes it easier and safer for children to find videos on topics that interest them. There are four channels and playlists for the children and parents: shows, music, learning, and explore. Parental controls are also part of the app, including timers, sound settings, and search settings.
Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Discuss the difference between legal and ethical considerations in marketing.
- Poll students: How often do they observe small children navigating the Web? What is their opinion about marketing to small children?
- View the video and additional information at:
- Divide students into teams and have team evaluate the new app, channels, and playlists.
- What are the lessons from this that can be applied to marketing to children and families?
Source: Google, Brandchannel.com