On March 2, 2022, following a fast-track legislative process in the French National Assembly and Senate, President Macron of France signed into law a new piece of legislation designed to reinforce parental controls over minors’ access to the Internet (the “Law”) (see final text of the Law published in the Official Journal here, in French).

The Law will apply primarily to manufacturers of devices that enable minors to access online services and content likely to harm [their] physical, mental or moral development” (e.g., computers, smart phones, and tablets).  The Law – which extends only to devices sold with an operating system (e.g., PCs, mobile phones, tablets, smart TVs) – requires manufacturers of such devices to provide a pre-installed parental control system which can be activated by parents or guardians upon first use.  The installation, use, and (where applicable) uninstallation the system must be provided to end users at no additional cost.Continue Reading France Enacts New Law on Parental Controls

On 12 January 2022, the French National Assembly’s Committee on Cultural Affairs and Education (the “Committee”) unanimously approved a draft bill seeking to “encourage the use of parental controls on certain equipment and services sold in France and allowing access to the Internet” (the “Bill”).

  1. Background

In 2021, the French Supervisory Authority (“CNIL”)

On April 21, 2020, the French Supervisory Authority (“CNIL”) launched a public consultation on the rights of minors in the digital services. The consultation is open until June 1, 2020.  The CNIL will use the contributions it receives to prepare recommendations in this area.

Under the French Data Protection Law, minors over 15 years old

Earlier this month, we blogged about the California Senate’s passage of the bill titled “Privacy Rights for California Minors in the Digital World”, which prohibits certain targeted advertising to California minors and requires that minors be allowed to delete materials they have posted online.  Yesterday, California Governor Jerry Brown signed the legislation, and it

Last Friday the California Senate unanimously passed legislation titled, “Privacy Rights for California Minors in the Digital World,” which prohibits certain types of marketing to minors (defined as a natural person under the age of 18 residing in California) and allows minors to delete materials they have posted online.  The bill, which already cleared the California Assembly, now has been sent to Governor Jerry Brown for approval.  If signed into law, the legislation would be effective beginning January 1, 2015. 

The bill, S.B. 365, which was introduced by Senator Darrell Steinberg, adds two new sections to the California Business & Professions Code.

Section 22580 would:

  • Prohibit an operator of a website, online service or application, or mobile application that is directed to minors from marketing or advertising on the service or application certain enumerated products or services that minors cannot otherwise legally purchase or use.  While some of these products and services may be obvious—e.g., alcohol, firearms, tobacco, and obscene materials—others—e.g., tanning and etching cream that is capable of defacing property—may be less so.  
  • Prohibit an operator of a website, online service or application, or mobile application from marketing or advertising the enumerated products or services where the operator has actual knowledge a minor is using its service or application, if the marketing or advertising is directed to that minor based on information specific to the minor such as profile, activity, address, or location, but excluding IP addresses and product identification numbers.  The operator shall be deemed in compliance with this provision if it takes reasonable actions in good faith designed to avoid marketing or advertising under these circumstances.
  • Prohibit an operator of a website, online service or application, or mobile application that is directed to minors or who has actual knowledge that a minor is using its service or application from knowingly using, disclosing, or compiling the personal information of a minor (or allowing a third party to do so) with actual knowledge that such activity is for purposes of marketing or advertising the enumerated products or services to that minor. 
  • These prohibitions do not apply, however, to the incidental placement of products or services embedded in content, if the content is not distributed by or at the direction of the operator primarily for the purposes of marketing and advertising the enumerated products or services.
  • Additionally, “marketing or advertising” is defined to require an “exchange for monetary compensation” in order “to make a communication to one or more individuals, or to arrange for the dissemination to the public of a communication, about a product or service the primary purpose of which is to encourage recipients of the communication to purchase or use the product or service.”  Thus, social media content or applications that only promote an enumerated product or service without paid placement would not fall within the scope of the bill. 

Continue Reading CA Legislature Passes Bill Establishing Online Protections for Minors

Earlier this week, Comcast — the largest cable operator in the U.S. — stated in a filing to the Federal Communications Commission that it would commit to limit interactive advertising in children’s programming as a condition of obtaining approval of its acquisition of NBC Universal.  Specifically, as long as they have control over the program’s advertising, Comcast and NBCU will not

Yesterday, the American Bar Association Forum on Communications Law and the ABA Center for Continuing Legal Education sponsored the program “Marketing to Minors: Traps for the Unwary in a Rapidly Evolving Legal Landscape.”  Representatives from the Federal Trade Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and Gannett provided an overview of the current rules for marketing to children, discussed the