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FTC Sues Amazon, Revises Guidelines: Smith’s P.K. Kannan Weighs in

Jul 17, 2014
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P.K.Kannan

The Federal Trade Commission has revised its guidelines for developing apps targeting children. The move follows an FTC lawsuit against Amazon for allowing its apps to be too accommodating for children to make online purchases without parental consent.

“When it comes to kids, you’re on shaky ground because (apps) are really impulse services, and kids can really fall into a trap,” said P.K. Kannan, Ralph J. Tyser Professor of Marketing Science and chair of the Department of Marketing, in a recent Christian Science Monitor report. 

Such transactions, the FTC alleges, have contributed to Amazon reaping millions of dollars since late 2011 from purchases not confirmed by their accountholders. The updated FTC guidelines target developers and app stores to make parents more aware of how their kids are using apps. 

Read more about the implications for Amazon, including further commentary from Kannan, here.

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