ScuttlePad

 
Social network with training wheels is safe, but limited.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

With such a simple platform, the site clearly sends a message of the importance of safe social networking.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Presently, there is no outside advertising visible anywhere on the site, but there are ad spaces alongside each page that contain a logo for IAB (The Interactive Advertising Bureau) and are presumably acting as holding space for future advertising content.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

ScuttlePad was designed to keep information as private as possible and exceed the safety guidelines. Accounts are created only with a child’s first name, state, country, age, and year of birth (and adults users who enter their real birth year will be booted from the site). All uploaded photos (which can include kids' real photos) are manually approved.

Kids are asked to submit a parent's email address to be approved for membership, though kids can enter any address.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this simple social networking website was designed with the young user in mind and is intended to create a safe online space for kids aged 6-11. The site is a pared-down place for kids to learn the basics of social networking and, unlike other social networks geared to kids, doesn’t have any of the extraneous games, puzzles, activities, or ads (at least yet) to occupy them. All content is closely monitored and controlled: Uploaded photos are manually reviewed and status updates and comments are created only through a pre-approved list of words.

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QUALITY
 

Introducing kids of any age to the world of social networking can feel like sending them into open water teeming with sharks. SCUTTLEPAD was created to help kids get their feet wet first. Designed to be a child’s first social networking experience, it’s a place where 6-11 year olds can collect "friends," post comments, and begin to learn to share information responsibly. For parents who want their elementary-aged kids to experience a safe, limited social network, this site provides that opportunity. Kids who expect (or are used to) an energetic, content-rich online experience may find the site somewhat simple -- and possibly boring. Interactions are basic -- just status updates and comments -- and use only pre-approved words. There are no other activities, but the principles of social networking are present and well-executed for this age group. Unfortunately, what parents deem suitable and safe may be too staid for the kids who visit. And they may not want to dive in.

Online interaction: Content and interaction is so closely monitored and controlled, there’s little opportunity for negative online interactions.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the importance of staying safe on social networking sites. Websites aren’t required to keep kids safe, but there are many things that parents and kids can do to stay safe while online, especially when you’re on a social network.

  • Talk about how social networking shouldn’t replace face-to-face interaction with friends. Ask your child if it’s more fun to be alone on a computer or playing with friends. How do you play differently online than you do in person?

  • Why the computer shouldn’t become the sole source of communication and play. Why is it important to have a healthy balance between seeing friends in person and connecting with them online? How can you work together to determine what is an appropriate amount of time to spend on the computer?

Website details

Genre:Social Networking
Pricing structure:Free

This review of ScuttlePad was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 9 years old November 23, 2010
age 9+
 
love it!
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Kid, 10 years old October 10, 2011
age 9+
 

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hi
What other families should know
Great messages
Teen, 14 years old Written bytristytoocute1 June 10, 2015
age 2+
 
i dont get the point
What other families should know
Too much consumerism

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