Monster Messenger analyzes the launch of Facebook's Messenger Kids
The social media giant has just announced the launch of Messenger Kids, which is an adapted version for children of its instant messaging app Facebook Messenger.
Messenger Kids is currently only available in the United States and on Apple products. Messenger Kids is the first Facebook product that is targeted at kids under age 13. This launch is anything but insignificant as it concerns the largest social network in the world. Facebook is a monopoly in the West with more than 2 billion users.
The launch version of the Messenger Kids app is a very limited version of Facebook Messenger. To sign up their children, parents must link their children to their Facebook account. They must then approve the contact requests of their children. Parents therefore monitor the people with whom their children may communicate, just like in the app Monster Messenger. It’s the right way to ensure the security of one’s children.
Things take a turn for the worse from the moment your child is signed up, as he drags his whole world into the nebulous Facebook. Essentially, all the contacts with whom he would like to communicate are required to have a Facebook account or be linked to a Facebook account. In plain English, if Grandpa and Grandma want to speak to their grandchildren, they will have to sign up on Facebook. If your child wishes to speak with his classmates or teammates, it’s even worse, as the parents of these friends will have to be on Facebook.
Under the social pressure of our dear little ones, Facebook holds the reins of a formidable Trojan horse, converting the last remaining people who had a digital life outside of Facebook.
The launch of Messenger Kids is the right moment to ask questions about the disproportionate amount of space that Facebook has taken up in our lives. Are we ready to put all of our children’s data in the hands of this American giant, which regularly appears on the front page of the news in the dramas that involve deceased adolescents? What confidence should we put in a social network that filters information and only feeds its users according to their tastes, to the detriment of their critical spirit? Fortunately, alternatives exist, and Monster Messenger is one of them.
Monster Messenger offers plenty of features and educational content, notably anti-bullying content, which is not featured in Messenger Kids. Monster Messenger is a secure social network, cost-free and ad-free, created by eduPad for children and their families. eduPad is an independent French startup, whose educational apps are used by more than 8 million children, parents, and teachers in 146 countries. Limiting children’s screen time is an important subject (nothing will replace a creative or athletic activity), but when children are in front of a screen, as much as one ensures that it happens in a supervised setting, the more they are still left unaware of manipulations of which they could be the object.