WhatsWhat.me (Beta) Launches Safe, Secure, “Kids-only” Social Network for “Tweens”

No-Bullying-Allowed Kids’ Social Network Uses Facial Recognition, Moderation and Fun Features Teaching Positive Online Behavior And Internet Safety Tips

WALTHAM, MA -- January 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — WhatsWhat.me (Beta) -- a safe, secure, “kids-only” social network for “tweens” ages 7-13 -- launches today using patent-pending facial recognition technology, moderation and kid-friendly features to teach kids positive online behavior, Internet safety and related life skills (www.whatswhat.me). Compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), WhatsWhat.me (Beta) provides an age-appropriate, “no-bullying allowed” community that requires parental permission to join. WhatsWhat.me (Beta) members can create profiles, interact with friends, join groups, play games, earn points and win prizes, in a fun kids’ social network that focuses on building skills while fostering appropriate online behavior. For parents, WhatsWhat.me (Beta) offers its online Parent Resource Center providing expert advice, news, Internet safety tips and information on cybersafety for children (www.whatswhat.me/parents).

Says Vincent Cannistraro, WhatsWhat.me (Beta) Chief Executive Officer and founder, “It concerns me that we teach kids how to cross the street but not how to behave online. We developed WhatsWhat.me (Beta) to give kids a safe, age-appropriate place to have fun and learn important online skills while providing parents peace of mind. And, our Parent Resource Center is a great way for parents to learn about cyberspace safety for their children.”

Katie Greer, Director of Internet Safety, WhatsWhat.me (Beta), says, “WhatsWhat.me (Beta) was built for kids under the age of 13 in compliance with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Our mission is to reach and proactively teach kids about positive online conduct in a safe, secure, kids-only environment, which we’ve developed carefully through technology, human moderation and enforceable community rules.”

The WhatsWhat.me (Beta) Difference: Safe, Secure, “Kids-only” & No Bullying Allowed:

Unlike other sites, WhatsWhat.me (Beta) uses the following features and unique, patent-pending technologies to provide a safe, secure, kids’ social network that fosters a nurturing, no-bullying-allowed environment:

• Biometric Facial Recognition Technology & “MeKey” — Authentic & Kid-safe: Using a Webcam during registration to create a “MeKey” for each child, the “MeKey” checks and matches the child’s unique facial features at every login to ensure his or her authentic identity — through patent-pending facial recognition technology — providing a safe, secure, kids-only site. Photos are encrypted and stored on state-of-the-art, secure servers.

• Report It! Button: Kids can report confidentially any improper online behavior; moderators review reports and take appropriate action with the kids, and if the violation is serious, the parents and/or law enforcement officials will be contacted.

• Site Moderation — Safe & Appropriate: Professional moderators monitor the site and help kids turn online mistakes into teachable moments.

• User-Approved Posts: All postings must be reviewed and approved by the recipient before becoming visible to others — effectively mitigating cyberbullying and teaching kids to “think before posting.”

• Community Rules & Anti-cyberbullying Policies: Created by law enforcement and cyberspace experts, WhatsWhat.me (Beta) community rules are posted and reinforced; violators will not be tolerated.

• Age-appropriate Networking: Kids are only allowed to network with other WhatsWhat.me (Beta) members one grade above or below their grade level, unless approved by a parent.

• Secure Registration: Parents participate in the registration process, which requires a valid credit card to ensure parental approval and authentic identification.

• Parent Resource Center (PRC): WhatsWhat.me (Beta)’s site for parents to obtain important information about social networking and keeping their kids safe in cyberspace www.whatswhat.me/parents.

WhatsWhat.me (Beta): Parental Approval Required:

  • Parental Approval: Parent and child sign up — together!
  • Secure, Authentic ID: Initial pictures of the child are captured via Webcam during sign-up, encrypted and verified at every login.
  • Age-appropriate “Friends”: Parents have the ability to approve and/or deny the child’s out-of-age-range peer requests.
  • Membership: $3.95/month or $29.95 a year
  • Parent Resource Center: Parents can ask questions from an online safety expert, join other parents in discussions about kids’ Internet safety and obtain information on cybersafety for their children.

WhatsWhat.me (Beta) Product Features:

At WhatsWhat.me (Beta), kids engage in a range of age-appropriate social networking activities including:

  • Interacting with friends online with messages (no live chat)
  • Playing online games
  • Earning MePoints
  • Winning prizes
  • Sharing photos
  • Posting comments- recipients approve posts before they are visible
  • Creating and joining age-appropriate groups

About WhatsWhat.me (Beta):

WhatsWhat.me (Beta) is a “kids-only” Website that provides safe, secure social networking for kids ages 7 to 13 (“tweens”) and utilizes patent-pending facial recognition technologies, moderation and kid-friendly features. WhatsWhat.me (Beta) is compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and fosters an age-appropriate, “no-bullying allowed” community while teaching positive online behavior, Internet safety and related life skills. For parents, WhatsWhat.me (Beta) offers its Parent Resource Center www.whatswhat.me/parents providing expert advice, news and information on cybersafety for children. WhatsWhat.me (Beta) Customer Service: 1-888-520-3211. For more information, please go to www.whatswhat.me Media Contact: Jeanie Ryan at jeanie@whatswhat.me or (603-235-5266).