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The notifications are colored that give smartphones like a candy store does not happen by accident. They are the fruit of a work of manufactures of addiction, w

Children and screens: the manipulations of the giants of the Web in the crosshairs of regulators

The notifications are colored that give smartphones like a candy store does not happen by accident. They are the fruit of a work of manufactures of addiction, w

Children and screens: the manipulations of the giants of the Web in the crosshairs of regulators

The notifications are colored that give smartphones like a candy store does not happen by accident. They are the fruit of a work of manufactures of addiction, well thought-out on the part of stakeholders in the digital field, who wish to engage users and, often, directing it in the way that suits them. The british authority for the protection of private life (ICO) has enough of that these techniques be implemented at the expense of the rights of the child, particularly vulnerable to these manipulative tactics common on the Internet. She has just published new rules to ensure that the Web giants limited the use of techniques of manipulation-by-design with children.

These techniques of manipulation of the design are well-known in the world of technologies under the name of "dark pattern" (or design doubtful). They are accused of making the addiction by playing on the cognitive biases, weaknesses, and vulnérabitités of each. For example, an application may propose the inclusion of "accept terms of use" by pressing a big green button "OK", or click instead on the conditions of use written in light grey and in any small typography.

Inspired slot machines

The Cnil English is concerned more particularly of the systems of "feedback loops" that encourage children to use a site and which are directly inspired by the slot machines. The systems of "likes" on Facebook and Instagram or "streaks" on Snapchat are directly in the crosshair of the regulator, because they make the addiction. The "streaks" or flames is a feature that is very popular among adolescents: for them to appear next to the name of his friends and hers on the app Snapchat, it is necessary to send snaps during several consecutive days. As for the "likes", they are notified with bright colors that attract attention and encourage them to return frequently on the application.

"READ ALSO: How the Web giants make the addiction children

The set of rules proposed by the Cnil in English consists of 16 lines of good conduct. These are public consultation and will be presented later, after the may 31, in the form of a draft law voted by the end of the year, hope the Cnil. The scope of the bill would be extra-territorial: if it is successful, this text will apply to any business dealing with an English child, whether it is a manufacturer of toy connected as a search engine, a social network or a streaming app. "Do not use techniques of incentive to encourage the children to provide data to non-necessary or encourage them to turn off the measures for the protection of their privacy," says, for example, the twelfth rule proposed by the ICO.

The british authority, also insists that the parameters of the "high privacy" will need to be enabled by default, and that the "robust mechanisms for age verification" will need to be put in place. Only the minimum amount of data should be collected and the monitoring of the location must be off by default, also recalls the Cnil English, citing the european Regulation on the Protection of Personal Data (RGPD). Under this text, which is equally authentic in Britain, the perpetrators are subject to sanctions, up to 4% of the overall turnover of a company.

Google, Apple and Facebook in the viewfinder

regulators around The world reinforce the legislative arsenal in the face of the many abuses observed. Two u.s. senators have introduced on the 9th April last a bill that would prohibit "design, modify, or manipulate a user interface in the purpose or substantial effect of obscuring, corrupt or impair the autonomy, decision-making or the choice of the user in obtaining his or her consent to disclose his data". Democrat Mark Warner and republican Deb Fisher, who wear both the text, accuse explicitly the Web giants like Facebook and Google of "misleading consumers to pass on their personal data". The bill would only apply to Web sites with more than 100 million active users per month. It includes an important section dedicated to minors, and also aims to limit the features that "grow the compulsive use" of children under the age of 13, and manipulate to get their consent to share their data.

"READ ALSO: Facebook accused of pressuring children to make in-app purchases in mobile games

The democratic senator Ed Markey also announced last march its intention to introduce, with the republican Josh Hawley, an update to COPPA, which governs the rights of children in the United States. Their bill aims to prohibit more firmly the manipulation techniques targeting children online, as well as the algorithms that guide them toward content that is prohibited to minors. The tone goes up in the United States on these issues, after a complaint was filed last October with the authority for the protection of american consumers, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), by a score of associations for the defence of children's rights. Those they were accusing Google, Facebook and Apple not doing enough to protect children against misleading practices of the mobile games released on their respective platforms, Google Play Store, Messenger, and the App Store. Google is also the subject of another complaint made to the FTC in April, because he is accused of using the location data of mobile numbers of minors to make the ad targeting on YouTube. Last February, it is the application of chinese Tik Tok that écopait a fine of $ 5.7 million for having collected the personal data of minors without the consent of their parents.

The FTC has already taken actions against the in-app purchases undue or misleading targeting children. In 2013, the agency carried out a survey on purchases of "gold coins" in games for children on smartphones. At the end of this work, Apple and Google - who also own the app stores - have been pinned. The FTC has concluded an agreement of $ 32.5 million with Apple, and a settlement of $ 19 million with Google concerning allegations that children have been deceived to make such purchases and that the companies had not properly warned the parents of the purchases of their children.

In France, any bill dedicated to these issues is for the moment to the study. The Cnil has, however, focused on the pitfalls of design in a report published at the beginning of January. The regulator will continue to toute the year to work with designers in workshops dedicated to ethics in the design of applications.

Publish Date : 18 Nisan 2019 Perşembe 00:00

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