11/15/2013 12:36 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Do Not Track Kids Act of 2013 Introduced in Congress

By Jim Steyer, Common Sense Media CEO and Founder

I am thrilled to share our support of the Do Not Track Kids Act of 2013, a bipartisan and bicameral bill introduced in Congress by Senator Ed Markey and Representative Joe Barton. It is promising to see leaders of both parties and both houses of Congress come together to address kids' online privacy, an issue of increasing concern for families across the country.

Today's kids are living so much of their lives online and are forfeiting their right to privacy before they fully understand what privacy is. Common Sense Media believes kids and families should have the right to control their privacy and personal information online. We are pleased that the Do Not Track Kids Act prohibits the collection of personal and location information from children and young teens without permission and empowers them with the right to delete personal content they post online.

Common Sense Media has been a strong supporter of the "Eraser Button" law that was recently enacted in California, and we've been encouraged to see other states across the country now following suit with similar bills. This trend highlights the need for an "eraser button" requirement at the national level.

Do Not Track Kids 2013 includes an "eraser button" provision and would provide parents and teens with control and choice over online tracking and targeted advertising. It reinforces recent updates to the FTC's Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule that enhance protection for personal information that websites and apps collect from children under 13. Also, it provides new safeguards for young teens age 13 to 15, who are often more prone to impulsive behavior online.

I commend Senator Markey and Representative Barton for their leadership in protecting kids' and teens' online privacy. As kids and teens live more and more of their lives in online, social-network, and mobile ecosystems, this legislation empowers them to erase some of their digital footprints and to tell Web operators: do not track.

Learn more about the bill here.

More on privacy at Common Sense Media
Q&A: What does California's "Eraser Button" law mean for my kids?
Why Kids Need an "Eraser Button"
Tell Congress That Kids' Privacy Matters

About Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media is dedicated to improving the lives of kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in a world of media and technology. We exist because our kids are growing up in a culture that profoundly impacts their physical, social, and emotional well-being. We provide families with the advice and media reviews they need in order to make the best choices for their children. Through our education programs and policy efforts, Common Sense Media empowers parents, educators, and young people to become knowledgeable and responsible digital citizens. For more information, go