A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this is a commercial, video-on-demand site run by Comcast Cable that lets kids watch what they want, when they want. Kids need to get permission from their parents to take part in the monitored and tame forums, but have access to most everything else (games, reading the comments, watching harmless user videos) without becoming a member. The site uses some savvy marketing tricks -- like doling out awards for the kids who earn the most "kachings" by playing games and featuring many ads for Comcast content.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
KABILLION.COM is Comcast's venture into the multi-platform world of combining broadband, video on demand, and Web sites. Kids can play games, chat on boards, get \"goodies\" like e-cards, and submit their own video. There's also K-beat, a blog about the music scene, and an option to listen to new release music samples.
Is it any good?
The biggest draw is that kids can watch episodes (in full screen) of popular shows like Curl It with Cobi and the animated I Got a Rocket. "Hosted" by teen actors, Kabillion.com attempts to be interactive through polls, contests, and by requesting feedback. The site is; however, monitored and to become a "kabillionaire" you have to get your parents to fill out (and fax back) a consent form to participate in any contests or forums.
The major drawback: Even though the jam-packed site is easy to navigate, the constantly blinking, moving, and pulsing ads make it visually difficult to tolerate for a long time.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the pros and cons of video on demand. When is it good to have instant access to what you want? Does it cause tube time to increase or are kids now able to be more efficient with their TV watching? How has it taken away -- or not -- from family TV or movie night?