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Your Baby Still Can't Read!

A few years ago, CCFC exposed a huckster named Robert Titzer, who falsely claimed that his video series could teach babies to read. Thanks to our work, the Federal Trade Commission ordered him to stop. It was a huge victory and a milestone in our ongoing campaign to support parents’ efforts to raise healthy babies by stopping the false and deceptive marketing of “educational” baby videos.  Incredibly, Robert Titzer is at it again. He’s changed the name of his videos from “Your Baby Can Read” to... Read more...

2015 TOADY Awards

Vote for Worst Toy of the Year Each year, the Toy Industry Association gathers to present its TOTY (Toy Of The Year) Awards. In honor of the industry that has led the way in commercializing childhood, CCFC will present its TOADY (Toys Oppressive And Destructive to Young Children) Award for the Worst Toy of the Year. From thousands of toys that promote precocious sexuality to children and push branded and screen-based entertainment at the expense of children’s play, CCFC has selected six... Read more...

Hell No Barbie: 8 reasons to leave Hello Barbie on the shelf

This holiday season, Mattel hopes to make Hello Barbie, a doll that records and analyzes children’s private conversations, a must-have toy. But experts agree: it’s a threat to children’s privacy, wellbeing, and creativity.  Here are 8 reasons not to buy Hello Barbie. Please help us spread the word about this terrible toy. If Hello Barbie is a hit, other eavesdropping toys are sure to follow. 1) Children’s private conversations shouldn’t be shared with corporations or strangers.... Read more...
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Stop McTeacher's Nights

Mark Noltner couldn’t believe what his daughter was saying. At school that day, her teachers had worn McDonald’s shirts and encouraged the students to attend a school fundraiser at a local McDonald’s.“I was outraged,” said Mark. “It’s hard enough helping my daughter navigate the minefield of unhealthy marketing; the last thing she needs is her teachers hawking junk food. And as a teacher myself, it infuriates me that McDonald’s would compromise the sanctity of our classrooms and manipulate the... Read more...

Stand Up for Student Privacy

We’re at a crucial juncture in our efforts to protect student privacy. Fueled by accountability mandates and pressure to incorporate technology into classrooms, schools are increasingly moving their operational and educational functions to online vendors. A survey by Fordham’s Center on Law and Information Privacy found that “95 percent of schools rely on cloud services for a diverse range of functions,” including data hosting, planning bus routes, classroom instruction, and assessments. And... Read more...

Stop the Unfair Ads on YouTube Kids

If we don’t act now, Google could singlehandedly demolish long-standing rules that protect children from harmful commercialism. In February, Google launched the YouTube Kids app for preschoolers, a supposedly child-friendly version of its popular online video service. But YouTube Kids is no safe haven. Instead, it’s what noted media scholar Dale Kunkel calls, “the most hyper-commercialized media environment for children I have ever seen.” Research shows that young children have trouble... Read more...

Stop Mattel’s "Hello Barbie" Eavesdropping Doll

At February's Toy Fair 2015 in New York City, Mattel unveiled "Hello Barbie," the Wi-Fi-connected doll that uses an embedded microphone to record children's voices—and other nearby conversations. But when Mattel releases the $74.99 toy in late fall, things will get seriously creepy. "Hello Barbie" transmits the recordings over the Internet to cloud servers. Mattel’s technology partner ToyTalk processes the audio with voice-recognition software.[1] Mattel says it will use this information to "... Read more...

School Bus Ad Action Center 2015

The commercialization of our schools could get a lot worse this year.Currently, only Texas, Arizona, Colorado, Tennessee, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Utah, Nevada, and New Mexico allow advertising on the exterior of school buses. But more states are considering overturning their long-standing prohibitions on school bus ads in a misguided attempt to solve their budget deficits. The financial plight of schools is extremely worrisome, but turning school buses into traveling billboards for... Read more...

This Clown Doesn't Belong in Schools

At the McDonald’s 2014 Annual Shareholders Meeting, CEO Don Thompson was questioned by Sally Kuzemchak, a concerned nutritionist and parent, about the company’s notorious targeting of children. Thompson tried to reassure Kuzemchak. “Relative to our marketing, we have been marketing responsibly,” he told her. And then he dropped a bombshell, “We don’t put Ronald out in schools.” It was a remarkable statement from the CEO of the world’s biggest purveyor of fast food. Not only was Thompson... Read more...

Tell the Girl Scouts: Don't Partner with Barbie

Update: As if encouraging girls to wear a branded Barbie patch on their uniforms isn’t bad enough, now Mattel and Girl Scouts USA have escalated their $2 million co-branding partnership by introducing a Barbie Girl Scout Doll—pink capris, high heeled hiking boots and all. For generations, the Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) has been a powerful force for good in the in the lives of girls. Parents trust the Girl Scouts to provide positive role models and foster their daughters’ healthy development... Read more...

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