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Facebook May Allow Under-13s

What happened? 

Facebook is considering allowing children under the age of 13 to join. At the moment, younger children are banned from using the site, although many still sign up. The plans are still being discussed, but two US politicians have already sent a letter to Facebook warning that they "strongly believe that children and their personal information should not be viewed as a source of revenue". The system will require parental permission via a Facebook app for children to register and use the site.

How will it affect you? 

The change doesn't mean your News Feed will suddenly be flooded with children's apps, any more than it is already. Also, even if Facebook wants younger users to sign up, it’s likely they'll find their own social networks, rather than 'friend' their parents online.

What do we think? 

Facebook should tread carefully: the site has already been criticized for not doing enough to prevent bullying and keep kids safe online, and adding younger children to the mix will make this even more of an issue. The US lawmakers also raise a good point: when is a child too young to be subjected to targeted advertising? Better to keep them using youth-focused networks instead.