Digital Marketing & Privacy

CCFC's Josh Golin Testifies Against Massachusetts' and Gates Foundation's InBloom Initiative

On March 26, CCFC's Josh Golin testified in front of the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and urged the Board to reconsider a plan to share confidential student data with for-profit companies. His testimony is below. CCFC is part of a growing coalition in for student's privacy in Massachusetts fighting that includes Citizens for Public Schools, the Mass PTA, and the ACLU of Massachusetts.

Coalition Urges Massachusetts Education Officials to Reconsider Controversial Gates Foundation Partnership

Date of Release: 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Josh Golin (617-896-9369;
Dr. Erik J. Champy, Mass PTA (617-861-7910;
Ann O'Halloran, Citizens for Public Schools (617-448-3647;

For Immediate Release

Victory! McDonald's Removes Networking Features in Online Games for Kids

After the Center for Digital Democracy, CCFC, and other advocacy groups filed complaints with the FTC, McDonald's has stopped collecting children's email addresses for viral marketing on The company had been encouraging children to upload photos and videos and then "forward-to-a-friend" by entering friends' email addresses without parental consent. Our FTC complaint charged that this practice was in clear violation of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).

FTC to fine Warner unit $1M over kids privacy

The FTC is taking action against a unit of the Warner Music Group Corp. for collecting personal information from young visitors of fan sites for Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez and others. The web operator collected names, email addresses, street addresses and cellphone numbers of over 100,000 kids 12 and under in violation of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act. Read more in this Associated Press article.

U.S. Is Tightening Web Privacy Rule to Shield Young

The Federal Trade Commission is moving toward updating the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) to protect children online. The new privacy rules would require that children's sites get permission from parents before tracking and targeting children on the web for the purpose of advertising. CCFC and other children's advocates welcome the changes, since COPPA, at nearly 15 years old, doesn't adequately protect children's privacy in the current technological landscape.

Standing Up For Children’s Privacy

CCFC is proud to be part of a broad coalition working to protect children’s privacy online. In August, along with 17 other organizations, we filed five separate complaints with the FTC against McDonald’s, Subway, General Mills, Nickelodeon, and Cartoon Network for violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). The complaints urge the FTC to investigate these companies for unfair and deceptive marketing practices that use refer-a-friend campaigns to incite children to engage in viral marketing.


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