WASHINGTON – Consumer advocates say the new YouTube Kids mobile app targets children with unfair and deceptive advertising, and they're asking federal regulators to investigate.
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Google introduced the app in February as a "safer" place for kids to explore videos because it was restricted to "family-focused content."
But consumer activists say the app is so stuffed with advertisements and product placements that it's hard to tell the difference between entertainment and commercials. One example is a 7-minute video of Disney's "Frozen" characters who appear as dolls inside a toy McDonald's eating ice cream and drinking Sprite.
In a letter Tuesday to the Federal Trade Commission, the activists say digital media should be subject to the same rules as television, which limits commercial content on kids' programming.