Welcome to Pixalate’s CTV & Mobile App Manual Reviews According to COPPA, a series containing the detailed factors the Trust & Safety Advisory Board educators used to assess an app’s child-directedness.
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 at ratings.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).
Manually reviewed in this post
This Week’s Reviewer: Amanda Moody
The 10 COPPA Rule factors
The teacher will indicate the factors they relied upon in their assessment using the 10 factors shown below that reflect the 10 child-directed factors in the COPPA Rule.
Manual Review: Nat Geo TV: Watch Live & On Demand
Likely audience after manual review
- Developer: Disney
- Roku App Store ID: 47390
- Amazon Fire TV App Store ID: B078HX6594
- 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.
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.