This is how Facebook plans to make Messenger Kids app safer

Yolanda Curtis
February 4, 2020

They can also see all devices on which their kids are logged into the app and log them out of Messenger Kids on any device via their parent dashboards. And regardless of Fb's fame, there aren't different chat apps providing these kind of parental controls - or the comfort of having the ability to add everybody in your loved ones to a toddler's chat checklist easily.

Messenger Kids was designed as a more child-friendly way to communicate on Facebook aimed at under-13s, controlled from a parent's main Facebook account.

Facebook announced on Tuesday that it plans to roll out a number of additional parental controls for its Messenger Kids app for children under the age of 13.

Madhavan and Antigone Davis, Facebook's global head of safety, tell PEOPLE that the upgrades emerged from continued talks with parents and their children about how to improve the Messenger Kids experience, which Davis says resembles "technology on training wheels". "They like the fact that mom and dad are there when they need them, that they can pop in when they need them".

"Or in some cases, if the child is feeling like, 'I don't feel comfortable with this conversation or this person is not being nice to me, ' they can block that person and the parent gets that view in terms of who their child has blocked through the app, or unblocked".

On top of that, parents can also see who their child has blocked or reported, and why.

A log of photos and videos that kids have sent and received is now available to parents, who can remove content that they feel is inappropriate and report that content.

With the update, unblocking is supported and parents are still able to review chats with blocked contacts.

Download Your Child's Information: Request a copy of your child's Messenger Kids information, similar to how you can download your own information within the Facebook app. Youngsters are warned in the event that they return to or are added to chats with blocked contacts.

The social network stressed that kids' data from Messenger Kids is not used for advertising, and there are no ads or in-app purchases within the app, adding that kids' information is not sold to anyone.

You'll also be able to see a list of contacts your child has either blocked or reported - Facebook already sends alerts to parents through Messenger whenever their child blocks or reports someone, but it sounds like this list will act as a quick reference.

Messenger Kids is an interesting part of Facebook's empire. We require them to adhere to strict data confidentiality and security obligations, and work with them on things like reviewing and addressing reported issues from our users. The market is ripe for a disruptor in the kids' space, but there's not enough money in that, apparently.

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