The educators manually review thousands of mobile apps available in the Google Play & Apple App Stores as well as connected TV (CTV) apps from the Roku Channel Store and Amazon Fire TV App Store using the COPPA Rule factors shown below & make those results available to the public atratings.pixalate.com.
This post takes a look at a popular mobile app (1 million+ downloads) from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. Our reviewer discusses how the subjective factors set forth in the COPPA Rule apply to the app and factor into the reviewer's determination as to whether the app is child-directed or general audience (i.e., it is not targeting children).
Crystal’s Take:2 Player games: the Challenge is a collection of mini games tailored for 1 or 2 players.
COPPA factors used to determine audience
2 Player games: the Challenge is a collection of mini-games such as ping pong, matching, solitaire, hungry hippos, tic tac toe, and much more. Players can choose between 1 or 2-player games by using AI or other online players. The visual content and animation of the games have bright, clean, simple, and colorful graphics that are child-directed.
The app is rated E for Everyone in the Google Play store and rated 4+ in the iOS store. There is no age gate. The app is free to download and play games on or offline. It does have in-app purchases. App reviews show that children use the app. A review posted in the Google Play store in August of 2023 says, “My wife and I (and kids) occasionally play this.” Another review posted in September of 2023 states, “I love to see the little ones understand the mechanics of the game.” There was no age specification in either review.
Screenshots of 2 Player games: The challenge
About Pixalate’s Trust & Safety Advisory Board
Pixalate’s Trust and Safety Advisory Board was created to bring in individuals with experience using child-directed apps in the classroom to review and assess which apps are child-directed. This manual review process serves to quality check Pixalate’s automated review process. See our full methodology for more information.
This blog post published by Pixalate is available for informational purposes only and is not considered legal advice. By viewing this blog post, the reader understands and agrees that there is no attorney-client relationship between the reader and the blog publisher. The blog should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in the applicable jurisdiction(s), and readers are urged to consult their own legal counsel on any specific legal questions concerning any specific situation. The content of this blog post reflects Pixalate's opinions with respect to factors that Pixalate believes may be useful to the digital media industry. Pixalate's opinions are just that, opinions, which means that they are neither facts nor guarantees; and this blog post is not intended to impugn the standing or reputation of any entity, person or app, but instead, to report findings pertaining to mobile and Connected TV (CTV) apps.
Disclaimer: The content of this page reflects Pixalate’s opinions with respect to the factors that Pixalate believes can be useful to the digital media industry. Any proprietary data shared is grounded in Pixalate’s proprietary technology and analytics, which Pixalate is continuously evaluating and updating. Any references to outside sources should not be construed as endorsements. Pixalate’s opinions are just that - opinion, not facts or guarantees.
Per the MRC,
“'Fraud' is not intended to represent fraud as defined in various laws, statutes and ordinances or as conventionally used in U.S. Court or other
legal proceedings, but rather a custom definition strictly for advertising measurement purposes. Also per the MRC,
“‘Invalid Traffic’ is defined generally as traffic
that does not meet certain ad serving quality or completeness criteria, or otherwise does not represent legitimate ad traffic that should be included in measurement counts.
Among the reasons why ad traffic may be deemed invalid is it is a result of non-human traffic (spiders, bots, etc.), or activity designed to produce fraudulent traffic.”