TOADY 2014: The Case for the U-verse app

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 five exceptional finalists. Our next nominee is:

U-verse app by BabyFirst

There’s no evidence that one screen benefits babies . . . so why not try two? Prepare your little one for a lifetime of digital multitasking with the BabyFirst U-verse app, the first “second screen” experience for infants and toddlers. When your little one “draws” on a tablet or smart phone, his “creations” appear on the TV screen right over regular BabyFirstTV programing! “Experts” claim that young children learn best from singularly focused activities and multisensory interaction. But the glazed look in baby’s eyes while he’s multitasking shows that something truly revolutionary is happening—right in his developing brain. 

TOADY 2014 voters make their case for the U-verse app:

"Children learn in relationship with loving and nurturing adults, as opposed to learning in relationship with screens." - Margo Sipes

"Babies need real life first experiences, ie. being in nature, touching, feeling, smelling, seeing, tasting real things." - Silvia Fassler

"During the first years the brain is developing on such a rate as will never happen any more during the whole lifetime. But this toy makes the necessary development truly impossible and brings up the potential consumer for all the rest TOADY candidates." - Eleonora lesina 

"As a Young Child Educator, I know that this "toy" not only ignores scientific studies of early learning- it contradicts them. Such a toy is certain to cause over-stimulation, frustration, wearyness and a dislike of learning during the most vulnerable time of development." - Barbara Sagat

"With the American Academy of Pediatricians recommending NO screen time before age two, companies shouldn't even be allowed to create apps marketed to babies. Not all parents understand this and many think that these apps are educational and will make their baby smarter, and put infants in front of screens instead of interacting with them!" - Melinda Corey

"Never mind what the American Academy of Pediatricians recommends. Let's market technology to brand new babies, mobile infants, and toddlers with multiple screens. Nothing short of a travesty..." - Beckey Thompson

"Really. Apps for our babies??? Does it get much worse?" - Michelle Levin 

"This is insidious. It seems creative and interactive, but it's not the kind of creativity and interactivity that developing babies need, and may actually harm rather than hinder their develepment." - Crystal Brunelli

"I've got to go with the 'toy' that's marketed to children ages 0-5. Really? Zero? Newborns should use this 2-screen abomination?" - Laura LeClair

"...the entire concept of TV and apps for babies so thoroughly disgusts me as preying on the most innocent in society for profit that companies who produce such rubbish should be boycotted in my opinion." - Tara Rice

If you have yet to make your pick for the 2014 TOADY award, you have until midnight on Sunday, December 7th to do so! Click Here to cast your vote!

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