YOURSPHERE is the creation of Mary Kay Hoal, a Davis, CA, mother of five determined to provide her children a safe online alternative to MySpace. Only children between the ages of up to age 18 may use Yoursphere, which touts itself as the first youth-oriented social network to guarantee no sexual predators. Joining requires that a parent register first and undergo identification verification. On this site, kids can set up a page, friend other members, and join "spheres" -- activity channels such as TV & Movies, Music, and Gaming.
The site boasts a young, appealing design, from the flash-graphics-heavy home page to the profile pages, which feature a Facebook-like news feed of friends' activities. Revolving safety tips keep kids constantly on the alert to online dangers, while the options of email, posting photos, and creating additional channels nicely mimic adult social networks.
Online interaction: Kids can start a blog, connect with friends, play multiplayer games, ask or answer questions on a variety of topics to share with the community, participate in chat rooms and message boards, and more. The site promotes positive interactions and may remove users who violate the rules. However, the games and videos are a mixed bag; one basic Bratz memory game lets players dress a suggestive doll, while the Kabillion Daily Videos don't contain any content.