BLOG

Do 6-Year-Olds Really Need to Use Facebook Messenger?

What’s going on?

Facebook is unveiling Messenger Kids, a version of the app that works through a parent’s account and gives kids ages 6 to 12 a way to chat without violating Facebook’s age limit (you need to be at least 13 to have a full-fledged account). Kids can chat with other Messenger and Messenger Kids users that have been approved by a parent.

Is it safe?

Yes … according to Facebook. The social network says it’s been working with federal regulators to make sure they’re all on the same page, and special safety filters will prevent young users from sharing nudity, sexual content and violence. Facebook has also promised a kid-friendly version of Giphy so Messenger Kids users can have some clean fun with colorful gifs.

Kids won’t show up in Facebook search, and Messenger Kids makes you jump through some hoops for your kid to connect through the app. Parents allowing their kid to connect with a friend on the app will have to first add their child’s friend’s parent on the social network.

What about ads?

Messenger Kids is ad-free and not monetized for ads, so Facebook won’t (yet) be selling your kids’ information to advertisers.

Glenn’s take:

Glenn wasn’t enthusiastic about the idea of yet another app competing for our attention and in this case, specifically targeting little kids.

“Are we not distracted enough already?” he asked. “We now need our 6-year-olds walking around the playground with their nose in a screen?”

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

GLENN: Do you want your 6-year-old using Facebook? This week, Facebook launched a new app called Messenger Kids. It's an app for kids to use on their tablets or smartphones. But parents can control it from their Facebook account. Facebook says it's addressing the need for a messaging app designed specifically for kids, but with the level of controls that parents want.

Oh, another app to target my children. As young as six. I feel good.

Don't worry. Facebook says it has spent months talking to parenting groups, behavioral experts, and families to develop the app. So it's completely safe and even healthy for your child, according to Facebook.

Quote, this opens up a whole new world to online communication for families, end quote.

Eh, maybe so. But I think it also opens up a whole new world of worms and the American culture. Are we not distracted enough already?

We now need our 6-year-olds walking around the playground with their nose in the screens. This app just gives kids more technology -- you know, another thingamajig to bug mom and dad about. Mom, I just need it for a second. Yeah, Mom, I just need it for a second.

And right before Christmas too. Thank you, Facebook.

Another drawback, it doesn't just provide predators, hackers, and Vladimir Putin with you, it also now hands your children over to them as well. Another point of attack. That's great. Thank you, Facebook.

Facebook says there are no ads in the app. And your child's information will not be used. They super promise never to use it for marketing purposes.

Uh-huh. But remember, really all this is one giant marketing app. It's just marketing Facebook. It's a massive recruiting tool. Facebook wants to hook kids on their social media product for the long-term. Now, you have to be 13 to have a regular Facebook account. But now, magically, you can have one at six. Yay! Oh, I want my kids just to be able to have access to all kinds of strangers at six years old.

Facebook says it's not going to automatically convert Messenger Kids accounts to adult accounts when they turn 13. So they could keep that account if they wanted to, until they were 30.

Even if this plan works, they won't need to. The kid will already want to be a customer for life on Facebook, unless they've got a creepy reason for hiding their age. Part of me -- part of me is saying, run! Especially when something is specifically designed to hook my kids. On the other hand, I've been reading a lot about technology, and, you know, those of us who say, I just want them to have a normal childhood, that's normal for us. What's normal for the next generation is communicating electronically. It is.

Sixty-six percent of our kids now six through 12 have their own smartphone or tablet. Do we allow our kids to use these kinds of apps to help them to be able to swim with the tide? Is it appropriate?

Every new gadget and app raises new questions. But this technology is moving so fast, that we don't have time to answer the deep questions before the next development.

RADIO

Do you have the GUTS to fight for freedom?

If Republicans lose their majority in the U.S. Senate after the Georgia runoff election, we may be facing dark times. So here's what you need to do: it's time mentally to prepare to stand up for freedom, which will likely take a LOT of courage from ALL of us. But, Glenn says, 'I'm not sitting down.' And, it only takes 15-20 percent of us to change the world. Use this Thanksgiving Day to discuss with your families the grim times we potentially may face, and how together you can best articulate to others WHY America's core principles are so important to preserve. So, who's in? Do YOU have the guts to fight for freedom?

RADIO

Far-left elites are using COVID to ‘reset’ America to socialism

Both Governor Newsom (California) and Governor Whitmer (Michigan) currently are being challenged by their state courts and governments for tyrannical policies issued during the COVID pandemic. And that's GREAT news because the 'Great Reset' continues to be pushed by far-left elites around the world…and Biden's team is in full support. Glenn explains how the Great Reset — a plan issued by the World Economic Forum — aims to use our current pandemic as a means to an end; they'll use COVID as an excuse to push 'stakeholder capitalism,' something similar to the economic system used today in China or the one used in 1930s Germany. Listen, as Glenn explains the TERRIFYING details to their plan…

THE GLENN BECK PODCAST

Megyn Kelly UNCENSORED: It's Not Time to Unify, It's Time to FIGHT | Ep 88

As America grows divided and afraid to disagree with the Democrats' woke plan for America, Megyn Kelly is ready to fight back for the truth. For nearly two decades, she navigated the volatile and broken world of the media. But as America leans on independent voices more than ever, she's breaking new ground with "The Megyn Kelly Show." Now, Megyn and Glenn break down what's coming next after the election: Black Lives Matter is mainstream, Leftists are making lists of Trump supporters, the Hunter Biden scandal is on the back burner … and is Fox News finished? Megyn and Glenn reminisce on their cable news days (including her infamous run-in with Donald Trump) and also give a look into the chaotic and shady world of journalism and the growing entitlement it's bred. And the best takeaway from her time at NBC? "Jane Fonda was an ass."

RADIO

How the downfall of socialist Yugoslavia is STRIKINGLY similar to America today

Glenn shares a now-viral video of a woman from Yugoslavia, who says she wants to warn Americans about what could become of our free nation soon. She details the history of her country and explains how leaders there used different tactics and phases to implement socialism so that they could gain total control. And, terrifyingly, the phases she describes are STRIKINGLY similar to the events and changes we've experienced in America over the past year.