Yoursphere

Website review by
Carla Thornton, Common Sense Media
Yoursphere Website Poster Image
Kid-only social network promises to block dangerous adults.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 7 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 17 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this website.

Educational value

Kids can learn to strengthen friendships with real-life friends and potentially meet new people in a safe online environment. They'll learn to share positive, appropriate content while figuring out their likes and dislikes, then finding like-minded kids to share their enthusiasm for pop stars or books. They'll also make choices about what to do with the credits they collect, redeeming them for prizes or donating to charity. They won't learn much from the games, which are pretty commercial and not very challenging. However, Yoursphere is definitely one of the warmer, more pleasant social networks for kids.

Positive messages

The site promotes positive online interactions, Internet safety for children, and connecting with other kids.

Violence
Sex
Language
Consumerism

Participating in site activities earns credits, which can be exchanged for prizes such as gaming consoles, iPhones, and other desirable items. Gold memberships, which cost $4.95 monthly (annual and family plans are also available), premium benefits including contests, access to a scholarship program, and more credits.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Yoursphere is one of the safe social networks out there for kids. It requires parents to submit to a background check for identity verification before activating a child's account. The social networking site for kids 17 and under includes games, a virtual world, a credit system where are rewarded for positive interaction in the community, and more. That said, content is squeaky clean, the strict membership rules surely will weed out some undesirables, and sign-ups are vetted against a database of registered sex offenders.

User Reviews

Adult Written byaimeejohns February 20, 2010

Not very safe

Not as safe as it seems. It has a long way to go
Parent of a 6, 9, and 12 year old Written byhoss88 July 4, 2011

dangerous!

first of all, part of this site is OURWORLD, which CSM rates at age 13, but this site is rated 9. what gives???? I can tell you that I find the content far to...
Kid, 9 years old July 15, 2011

good for kids

Creativity Safe nobody over 18
Kid, 11 years old April 11, 2009
you get 30 days free

What's it about?

Yousphere is a social network for kids up to 17. The home page has a Pinterest-like interface; you can scroll through an endless series of pin-style boxes, each containing a photo, quiz, inspirational quote, or link to an article. Forums and comments are monitored, but not heavily. Once verified, kids can create a profile, add friends, and play games on the site.

You can join "Spheres," themed groups where kids can post content about their favorite sports, tv shows, or any subject of interest; they include Pets, Books, Causes, and Gaming. Other users can join and comment.

Is it any good?

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.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace and whether they guard the safety of kids, especially kids under 13. How do they compare to sites like Yoursphere when it comes to kids' safety? Check out Common Sense Media's Facebook for Parents tipsheet.

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  • Families can also talk about being safe in social networks.

Website details

For kids who love to stay safe online

Our editors recommend

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