CCFC Blog

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 stifle creativity, lionize brands, and promote screen-based entertainment at the expense of children’s play, CCFC and our partners have selected six exceptional finalists for 2016. Below, TRUCE makes the case for Play Doh’s Hulk Smash kit. When CCFC asked TRUCE to recommend the worst toy of the year, we immediately thought of Play Doh! Not what you’d expect, is it? While this Hulk and Ironman Play Doh set may not seem...
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 stifle creativity, lionize brands, and promote screen-based entertainment at the expense of children’s play, CCFC and our partners have selected six exceptional finalists for 2016. Below, the Story of Stuff makes the case for Shopkins Tall Mall playset. As more wreaths adorn front doors and more coats and rain boots adorn our neighbors, it's clear that the holidays are approaching, and with them, the peak shopping season...
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 stifle creativity, lionize brands, and promote screen-based entertainment at the expense of children’s play, CCFC and our partners have selected six exceptional finalists for 2016. Below, Public Citizen’s Commercial Alert makes the case for The Game of Life: Empire. Every year, toy companies seem to release a toy more egregious than the last. Corporations are constantly trying to find ways to reach children and turn them...
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 stifle creativity, lionize brands, and promote screen-based entertainment at the expense of children’s play, CCFC and our partners have selected six exceptional finalists for 2016. Below, EPIC makes the case for Pokemon GO. Pokemon GO collects a treasure trove of sensitive data about its players, many of whom are young children and teens. Parents should think twice before allowing their children to turn over their...
As the story goes, Santa Claus is one busy guy. For 11 months of each year, from dawn ‘til dusk, he and his elves rarely leave the workshop (except for the occasional cookie with milk) because getting ready for Christmas is more than a full time job. That’s how the story goes, anyway. But the true story about Santa’s schedule is that he probably has the most cush job in the world. It’s a story about an 11-month vacation, advertisers, and unsuspecting children. Santa, first of all, is very astute. He tries to anticipate what good little girls and boys want for Christmas, but he’s smart enough to know that it’s not wise to spend all year making toys without having done a little market research first. Nobody wants a warehouse full of toys...
This piece was originally published at BeyondChron  This week, Los Angeles teachers made it very clear: it’s time for McDonald’s to stay away from their students and schools. “Across the country and in Los Angeles, McDonald’s is exploiting our schools and teachers to market its unhealthy fare to children,” said Cecily Myart-Cruz, vice president of United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA). McDonald’s and the junk food industry have long preyed on the basic vulnerabilities of children to market unhealthy food to them and turn them into customers for life. One distressing and unconscionable marketing tactic McDonald’s uses is McTeacher’s Nights, where the corporation has teachers work behind the counters in local stores selling burgers,...
I am a child of the 60s. I was raised in an activist household – in 1969, the whole family drove through the night to Washington, DC, to attend the largest anti-war demonstration in history. It was a household that not only limited television time to one hour a day, much to the consternation of my brother and I, but where there was also a ban on what my wise parents called “television toys.” Though they themselves were raised in the radio era, my parents were ahead of their time – they are among the first generation of parents who realized the damaging impact television could have on kids. They imparted upon me what I now appreciate as a healthy skepticism about how information is conveyed and consumed. I am a parent of three kids born in...
Last week my youngest son left for college, signaling the end of the most intense phase of child-rearing for me and my wife. This big life transition has led me to reflect a lot lately on my experience as a parent. I think if you asked my sons about what my wife and I were like as parents, they both would almost certainly mention our screen time rules.  When they were very little, my sons watched basically no TV nor played on computers. This wasn’t too hard, since neither tablets nor cell phones were around in the 1990s. Also, my wife and I watched very little TV, and the TV was down in the basement. “Out of sight, out of mind” works remarkably well with little kids.  Around age 2, we began allowing 30 minutes of screen time per day,...
On August 12, 2016, CCFC’s David Monahan joined Kristen Strader and Margrete Strand Rangnes of Public Citizen’s Commercial Alert for a meeting with staff of the National Park Service (NPS) in Washington, DC. They presented the NPS with 213,926 petition signatures from the members of CREDO Action, Commercial Alert, and CCFC, asking the NPS to abandon plans to permit corporate sponsorships and branding in our parks.  The meeting was productive, and CCFC will continue to work with our partners to persuade the NPS to heed the wishes of the people and keep marketing out of our national parks. Thanks to all who have signed the petition, and if you have yet to do so, please...
Today, Panera Bread announced a unique commitment to the wellbeing of children: they will not use toys, characters, or other enticements to sell their kids’ meals, and they’re challenging other restaurants to do the same. Their pledge is part of a broader Kids Meal Promise, which aims to reshape the way people think about kids’ food. For us, it’s an important and exciting step toward ending child-targeted marketing. You hear a lot from us when corporations exploit children’s vulnerabilities in order to build brand loyalty, and food marketers are some of the...

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