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Old 08-22-2013, 02:07 PM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Your kid's Kindle could be X-rated, child protection charity warns

A UK children's charity, NSPCC, urges parents to monitor the e-books read by their children. The warnings comes after a mother caught her 13-year-old daughter discussing with a friend an X-rated Kindle publication how to make sex tapes to become famous. The Telegraph reports:

Quote:
The two teenagers had been reading aloud from It’s All About the Sex Face: A Guide to Becoming a Celebrity, a no holds barred manual offering tips on how to achieve instant fame by producing a sex video.

The e-book, which costs £1.02 to download from Amazon, claims you can “actually become famous without even having a talent”.

Jon Brown, head of sexual abuse at the NSPCC, said: “It is really important to talk to your children about the risks that are out there either online or offline, in an age-appropriate way and without frightening them.
It's unfortunate that it goes so far that owning a reading device should require parents to discuss with their children the risks of making sex tapes. Or should online book sellers be required to include warnings on adult literature? What do you think?
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:22 PM   #2
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I think parents should ALWAYS monitor what their impressionable children are reading. Regardless of the medium.
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexander Turcic View Post
It's unfortunate that it goes so far that owning a reading device should require parents to discuss with their children the risks of making sex tapes. Or should online book sellers be required to include warnings on adult literature? What do you think?
God forbid parents should actually have to be, you know, parents.

Everyone knows that ebookstores sell all types of content. Why would you be surprised that this meant that parents needed to (frankly) be a parent?
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:34 PM   #4
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The fact that this is a Kindle is totally irrelevant to this story. Exactly the same would be true with paper books bought from a traditional bookstore.
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:35 PM   #5
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That's NOT an issue with Amazon or the Kindle. Those girls just have no morals.

Or it is a book that is being spread around at school like gossip.
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:36 PM   #6
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You can buy paper books with cash.
For ebooks you need a credit card.
A 13-year-old doesn't have a credit card, so Mom screwed up somehow.
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:38 PM   #7
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No, you can use gift vouchers at Amazon. No need for a credit card.
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:43 PM   #8
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Has anyone seen this article about a grandmother wanting to ban books from a public library because her grandson was able to borrow an "adult" book?

http://www.cbc.ca/news/arts/story/20...tic-novel.html
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nate the great View Post
Everyone knows that ebookstores sell all types of content.
Likewise you could argue why are ebook stores allowed to sell any kind of content to anyone, while stores selling game and video content have strict age regulations?
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:58 PM   #10
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Personally, I would love warnings (speaking for myself and not my kids) because if there is going to be gory violence or -- to a lesser extent -- explicit sex, then *I* want to know about it. My moods vary with the sex, but I *never* want to read books with lots of detailed violence. I think I skip a lot of potentially good books because I'm not certain of the content.

With my kids, at the moment they are linked to my account, so they can't buy anything without me finding out about it; I am guilty of buying books based on reviews and not reading them myself. I do download them for myself to read "someday" (and I hope I'm not unpleasantly surprised when I get around to it.)

That has nothing to do with the topic, except that I wanted to present myself as an involved parent. That book title looks like one I would refuse them, although I'd probably at least look it up to make sure it really is what it says (and then tell them no again, for emphasis. )
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:10 PM   #11
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My parents certainly didn't monitor what I was reading when I was 13. I don't think that made them bad parents. I was an avid reader at that age devoured whatever I could get my hands on. And what 13-year-old doesn't enjoy sex scenes in books?
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:24 PM   #12
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While I agree that parents should ALWAYS monitor what their children are reading/watching/doing, as a parent of 4, that is easier said than done.
As my children have slowly been given access to the internet and technology I have had to spend HOURS researching the best ways to allow them to experience and use new things in a safe and responsible environment. For the internet and wifi connection in the house there are modems with parental controls or OpenDNS, for the iphone there is restrictions and shared itunes apple ID's. However for the Kindle I feel there is nearly nothing!
As a new Kindle HD owner, purchased this month for my 13 yo son, I am VERY disappointed in the options Amazon has for parental controls. It isn't intuitive at all. Just take a stroll through the countless Amazon forum threads on the subject and you'll see I'm not the only one to feel this way. You will find hundreds of stories just like the one above where children have been exposed to things they should have been protected from and the majority of parents are saying they thought they had locked the device down.
I have a number of complaints. If I don't want my own ebook purchases scrolling across my 13 yr old's screen I have to set him at the younger age restriction, 9 yo, which makes the device too baby-ish for him. Not only that but when it is set to his appropriate age restriction level the suggestions for ebooks are all based from my past purchases, which are not appropriate for him. The age restriction you set doesn't take into account the content that you have in your 'cloud' and filter it appropriately. If I really wanted his experience to be tailored just for him I would probably need to make him his own amazon account. That is cumbersome and impractical not to mention has us running into double-triple+ purchases for the family. We have an amazon prime account, there is no way I'm going to pay for that twice let alone 6 times over. If we've purchased several Kindles for our family we should be able to customize each one based on the family member using it.
Apple has worked this out!! A family can share an Apple ID for itunes, with the auto download feature turned off, and then each have individual apple ID's for contacts, email, imessage, etc. Plus the apple devices have the restriction settings, which include content ratings.
If amazon wants to compete with Apple they need to fine tune their parental controls, content ratings, and move towards a family type account infrastructure. Until they do we are going to continue to hear of children who have been harmed by their devices because of the lack of parental over-site options.
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:29 PM   #13
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Speaking from my own experience, a 13-year-old boy knows exactly what he wants to read and doesn't need to be monitored or have restrictions set. I certainly don't think I was "damaged" by having unrestricted access to my local library at 13.
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:31 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doctorow View Post
Likewise you could argue why are ebook stores allowed to sell any kind of content to anyone, while stores selling game and video content have strict age regulations?
Are the age regulations legally enforced or are they voluntary?

I don't know about games but MPAA ratings, for example, have no legal basis.
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:36 PM   #15
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PEGI video game age ratings became legally enforced in the UK in July 2012. A shop can be fined for selling games to children younger than the age rating.
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