Privacy advocates worry FTC will fall short in addressing YouTube children's privacy practices

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Consumer advocates are pushing for the Federal Trade Commission to come down hard on YouTube’s handling of children’s videos after conversations with the agency’s leadership prompted concerns about how regulators would be approaching a settlement with the video-sharing site. The Center for Digital Democracy and the Center for a Commercial-Free Childhood sent a letter to the FTC, urging the FTC to force YouTube to separate the children’s videos from the rest of the platform in order to better crack down on illegal data collection of younger viewers. Jeffrey Chester, CDD’s executive director, said that he became “alarmed” when FTC commissioners asked about a potential remedy that would allow YouTube content creators to flag content on their platform that is directed at children in order to make sure advertisers comply with children’s privacy laws. “It really did sound like they potentially would support a proposal that could take the responsibility ultimately away from Google and place that burden on programmers,” Chester said. “What I said was if the commission cannot enforce the one privacy law it has responsibility for it has no business given even more power by Congress to protect the rest of us,” he added, referring to the role the FTC would play in any potential privacy legislation that lawmakers consider. “If it can't protect children it should not be empowered by Congress to protect everyone else.”

Advocates worry FTC will fall short in addressing YouTube children's privacy practices Read the Letter Privacy Groups: Kids Programming Should be Off YouTube (B&C)