The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act should be abolished

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/30/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 325 times Debate No: 97495
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
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The "Children's Online Privacy Protection Act" requires websites or apps to obtain "verifiable parental consent" before collecting information about children under 13. "Verifiable parental consent" means parents must submit a credit card or something before a website or app operator can collect personal information from a child including, birthdate, phone number, email address, etc. here is why.

1. The verification process is cumbersome. Realistically, both kids and parents would rather enter a different birth date than go through the cumbersome verification process. Apps are too ubiquitous to go to this verification process just to collect a child's geolocation and phone # for a free alternative to texting such as WhatsApp.

2. Verification reduces, not increases privacy. Verification often requires parents to provide sensitive information, such as a PIN or credit card number. This reduces, instead of increases privacy. Now what has more privacy? A secure messaging platform like Viber accessing a phone number from a child under 13, or a parent providing their credit card number via wifi just to consent to the tracking of the child's geolocation?

3. Parents are the ones who are ultimately responsible for their child's internet usage. If a child signed up for a website or app, that means their parent's have allowed it. In 2004, a number of privacy interest groups filed a complaint with the FTC asserting Amazon violated COPPA by allowing children under 13 to review toys. Don't you need to purchase something from Amazon in order to review something on Amazon? So kids must be reviewing toys via their parents account. If their parents allowed them to use their Amazon accounts, they gave consent. If a parent allows their child to use snapchat, they gave consent.

4. Realistically, you can't prevent kids from lying about their age. So it doesn't make sense to fine an operator for something that ultimately cannot be prevented. In 2006, Xanga was fined $1 million for repeatedly allowing children under 13 to sign up. These kids will continue to sign up. They will just lie about their age. What is the point of fining websites or apps for something that will happen anyway?

5. Asking for parental verification for everything is impractical. Geolocation, phone numbers, email address, parents have to provide a credit card every time an App requires requires this information. This is not olny cumbersome, but impractical as technology is getting more advanced. COPPA was passed in 2000. At that time no one predicted the tech world would be advanced as it is today.

WhatsApp and other apps are a free alternative to text messaging require a phone number. Yet parents are required to provide their credit card information (in the name of "privacy") just so WhatsApp can collect their child's phone number. Yet requiring a parent's consent for everything will either force children to lie about their age or will limit technology to kids. I'm not opposed to privacy regulations, just the ones set out in COPPA.
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Debate Round No. 1
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Capitalistslave 1 year ago
I completely agree with pro. I don't know if you will find someone who disagrees, but good luck on that
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