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 game from the 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).
Emma’s take:A simple driving game made memorable by a Goat. Compelling in-game progression and familiar visuals make this appealing to a mixed audience.
COPPA factors used to determine audience
Visually, the game is appealing to children. The cartoonish character and colorful vehicles are reminiscent of many other similarly appealing games. The Goat character appears designed to look amusing and silly, and the vehicles he drives are similar to children's toys; such as Paw Patrol vehicles and Mario Karts.
Capitalising on the popularity of other goat simulation games, this app is goat-related in name only. Aside from the animated character who drives your vehicle, you won’t find any realistic goat content here. Rather, you are challenged to drive a kart around roads and obstacles, hitting defined markers on your way. The gameplay is similar to many other driving games available, and will be familiar to younger users.
The game features in-game banner ads provided by Google. They change periodically and were observed advertising tutoring courses, kitchen equipment and gaming hardware.
The game has several levels to play through, all but the first are locked. There are also a number of cars available for the goat to drive. The levels and alternative cars can be unlocked by completing the level, or by making an in-app purchase to unlock all features in the full game. The user is awarded a score out of three stars to determine how well they have performed, a feature which provides feedback and motivation to improve.
An account is not needed to play, and there is no age gate or other age verification.
Screenshots of Goat Driving Car Parking Simulator
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.
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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.”