Weekly Briefing: 13-20 February 2019
New rules ban bookmakers from targeting children with gambling ads
New rules announced by the Committees of Advertising Practice will make it illegal for bookmakers to target children with gambling adverts, according to The Guardian. The new regulation is a step forward in protecting children from problem gambling, but Parent Zone believes that more must be done to tackle the growing problem.
Education secretary encourages parents to make the most of screen time
Damian Hinds has urged parents to use screen time constructively after the Department for Education decided to give disadvantaged families free access to high-quality learning apps, according to the Independent. Hinds hopes the decision will help young people develop communication skills before they start school and inspire healthy screen time habits.
Facebook labelled 'digital gangsters' by DCMS
A new report by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee claimed that Facebook deliberately broke privacy and competition law and should be bound by statutory regulation, according to The Guardian. The report, which labels Facebook’s executives as ‘digital gangsters’, has been endorsed by political figures such as Tom Watson.
Telegram and Discord used to spread child sexual exploitation material
A BBC investigation has found that sexual predators have been using messaging platforms like Telegram and Discord to give people access to child sexual exploitation material. Criminals favour messaging networks which encrypts messages so that they cannot be traced or accessed by law enforcement.
Fortnite-rival Apex Legends played by 25m in first two weeks
The new online multiplayer game Apex Legends has gained more than 25m players in the first two weeks after release and could prove worthy competition to Epic Games’ Fortnite, according to the BBC. Fortnite, which only had 10m players after the first two weeks, has up until now upheld a monopoly on free-to-play Battle Royale games.
MPs say social media firms should be held responsible for what is posted
The chair of the Commons committee investigating fake news, Damian Collins, has said that social media firms should be held legally responsible for what is published on their platforms, according to The Telegraph. He is suggesting that a new regulator should be given the power to investigate whether a platform has the proper safeguards in place and fine them if they don’t.
Roblox gives PewDiePie account back after username misunderstanding
The popular online game Roblox has given the YouTuber PewDiePie his account back after banning it over an ‘inappropriate username’, according to the BBC. Roblox, which has more than 70m monthly users, admitted that the ban was a misunderstanding as the algorithms detected what it thought was ‘behaviour that falls outside their community standards’.