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 CTV app from the Amazon Fire TV App store and the Roku Channel 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).
Amanda’s take: The Nat Geo TV: Watch Live & On Demand app has reality TV shows and documentaries about animals, nature, and history. While educational, the content is directed to a general audience.
COPPA factors used to determine audience
The Nat Geo TV app loads with hundreds of shows and documentaries with titles like “World's Most Deadliest Snakes,” “Narco Wars,” “Inside WWII” and “Big Cat Week.” While these shows vary in topics from history, to current issues, to zoos and animals, overall nothing is overtly child-directed.
The shows feature adult actors or voice overs from adults; vocabulary and language used in these shows as well as the subject of these shows appear to be created for general audiences. Even the shows on this app featuring animals do not appear to be directed to children as they do not feature child voices, actors, supporting sounds/music, nor animation that would appeal to children. Additionally, a keyword search through the Amazon App Store reviews did not show any reviews from children using the app.
The Nat Geo TV app does require users to sign in with a TV provider to access some content while other content streams without signing in. When previewing some shows, I encountered several ads including ads for McDonalds, RINVOQ (eczema prescription drug), and Clearblue pregnancy test.
Screenshots of Nat Geo TV: Watch Live & On Demand:
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.”