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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that they should approach VEVO as they would YouTube or other video sites. Although there's plenty of safe content on this music video streaming site, there's also a lot that's inappropriate. This is one site that requires parental supervision for young kids, since they can easily find videos that include images of violence, sex, and bad behavior, just as simply as they can click on a lullaby. Also beware of the obvious ads and not-so-noticeable links that send visitors off to buy music and artist merchandise with just a click. With only two pages of children's music content, it's best to just have young kids skip the site altogether.
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What's it about?
Visitors can explore VEVO's extensive online library of music videos, which are organized by genre ranging from country to rap. Users don't have to create an account to watch videos, but are encouraged to do so as a way to create, save, and share playlists. The search tool lets users search by artist, song name, album name, and keyword. If connected to Facebook, users can see their friends' favorite videos.
Is it any good?
If YouTube is your old fuzzy big screen TV, VEVO is the latest 60-inch flat screen. VEVO is polished, easy on the eyes, and slickly combines marketing with music. No surprise then that it was designed by the music industry (Universal, Sony, and EMI). But the site seems to kill the independent spirit that makes viral video so much fun. After all, what do you get when you take the user-created content out of online video? MTV Music, perhaps? But music fans will benefit from this site, with easy to access music videos beautifully displayed in perfect detail and featuring a "favorites" feature that will keep laptops everywhere buzzing with tunes. VEVO is by no means right now a comprehensive or all that creative site, but it surely will be popular, and it will do just what the record companies intended: promote and sell more records. But it won't revolutionize the Internet like YouTube has.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how websites market merchandise. Are you aware of ways links are used to direct traffic to a commercial site? Sometimes a site doesn't have to be directly selling something to influence users to make purchases.
What do you think of this video site compared to sites that accept content like You Tube? Do you think it's easier to find quality videos on this site, or do you miss finding the variety of videos that are permitted on other sites?
How can you avoid videos that include racy images or violent content? Are there some bands or artists that generally include more inappropriate content than others? Can a song's lyrics give you a clue to what the video content is going to be?