Confirmed victory
Petitioning Federal Trade Commission

Let parents control who can collect data from their kids

The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) is currently the only legislative tool available that keeps parents in control of what data and personal information companies can collect about children under 13 while they are online.  The Federal Trade Commission has proposed rule changes that will update the law and keep parents in control even in this new digital era of social media networks, mobile apps, gaming sites and tracking that goes on while kids are web browsing.  There is already mounting industry opposition to these rule changes which will provide parents with another tool to stay in control.  Parents must make their voices heard so that the FTC knows that we support these important rule changes that keep parents in charge.  

Letter to
Federal Trade Commission
I just signed the following petition addressed to: Federal Trade Commission.

Please join me and support the proposed rule changes to the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).

Parents should be able to control the personal information that websites and mobile apps collect from their children.

The digital world offers great opportunities for children and families, but it also presents some potential problems. Today kids are the digital generation spending most of their time online through mobile phones, social networking sites, online games, laptops and other devices. The online world in which they live is one where all their activities are tracked and monitored 24/7 by website operators, data collection companies and advertising networks. Most everyone agrees that parents are the ones who should protect their children from these and other downsides of digital media. But parents can’t protect their kids’ online privacy unless online companies give them a chance.

There is already a law that says parents must agree before personal data is collected from their kids. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), passed in 1998, requires that sites and services get permission from a parent or guardian before collecting or using personal information from children under age 13.
But 1998 was a long time ago, and the online and mobile world has changed a lot. Changes include not only innovations like smart phones and social networks, but also data brokers that buy and sell personal information, online advertising networks, and cookies and devices that can track wherever you go online. In fact, a recent study by The Wall Street Journal found 30% more cookies and tracking devices on web sites designed for kids than on web sites designed for the general public.

Kids shouldn’t be tracked online unless their parents decide it’s OK. And parents can’t make smart decisions – and teach their kids to make smart decisions as they grow older – unless online and mobile companies are giving them the tools and information they need.

The Federal Trade Commission has drafted revised COPPA rules to keep pace with changes in the online and mobile world, and to make sure parents continue to be the gatekeepers in the online lives of their children. Unfortunately leading companies are opposing these important rule changes which will give parents the updated tools to address their kids online privacy in a digital era. We need you to make your voice heard and tell the FTC that parents and not online companies are the ones who should be in charge of their kids online data.

Please sign this petition and tell FTC leaders you support their efforts to keep parents in charge. You’ll also be telling online companies that they need to provide better choices and better information, so that parents and families can continue to thrive in the digital world.



Joy Spencer started this petition with a single signature, and won with 2,098 supporters. Start a petition to change something you care about.