Everyone nowadays has a Facebook account. When you turn the ripe old age of 13 with or without parents approval you can have your own coveted account.
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So why is it when Microsoft released the much anticipated Facebook, last.fm, Twitter integration today they couldn’t get a patch out in time so parents can give authorization for their of age child permission to use a service they are already using? Microsoft was aware of this when the preview program was announced and Facebook has not changed their policy as seen above. Here is what was on Major Nelson’s page November 6th:
As some of you might be aware, those under the age of 18 are not able to access Twitter, Facebook and Last.fm in our public preview. I want to you let you know that this will remain the case when it launches to the world soon. We made this decision because as it stands now, parents aren’t able to use Family Settings to customize which of these applications their children can access. In order to offer an age-appropriate environment for everyone, we decided to turn off these applications for those Gold members under the age of 18. As expected, this has been a hot topic with the preview users. We want to make sure everyone was aware, however, that the development team is working on an update that gives parents the choice of which social applications their children can access. This means that Xbox LIVE members between the ages of 13 and 17 will be able to use Facebook, Twitter and Last.fm as long as their parents approve. The team hope to roll this out several weeks after launch and I will update you on the exact date as it gets closer.
The Xbox 360 has had the parental controls in place for some time and it is up to the parents to make use of them, but why is that Microsoft thought it would be OK to have the controls in place so that parents can allow children to play M (Mature) rated games and accept friend requests, but couldn’t patch the newest update in time with parental controls.
Last.fm and Twitter do not have any age requirement and I do understand Microsoft’s concern, but why release something that is not fully functioning for everyone as of yet. Did we need this service so bad that we couldn’t wait for it to be completed for everyone? Well I guess we will have to wait the “several weeks after launch” to see the outcome. Until then let’s see if Sony will get it right when they release Facebook in their v3.10 update.