tirsdag 23. mars 2010

DEMO: Everloop brings social networking to the tween set

There’s a reason that Facebook, MySpace and other big social networks don’t allow people under age 13 to join. There’s questionable content on most of them, and almost any member can be contacted by strangers. But new entrant Everloop, launching at the DEMO conference in Palm Desert, Calif., seeks to give tweens, ages eight to 13 a safer social networking platform of their own.
Everloop actually provides more functionality than Facebook, allowing its members to customize their profiles in a wide variety of ways — like changing the background or adding decorative or branded stickers. Just like the more adult social networks, Everloop also lets its members email one another, instant message each other directly within the site, and even conduct voice chat conversations.
Members can upload photos and videos, and can easily share them with friends, like them and comment on them. They can join groups based on interests, and can buy virtual goods with the site’s Evercredit payment system. The company even publishes its own web video series, “Top 10 with Dani” straight on the site. And, just like Facebook, it provides a catalogue of 1,500 games.
Hilary DeCesare, CEO of Everloop, estimates the tween social networking marking at $200 billion — a staggering amount that has not been sufficiently tapped. This age bracket is highly engaged with media and brands, and has more discretionary cash on hand than most people think. Everloop provides endless opportunities for brands to reach this demographic, DeCesare says.
While the company seems to offer all of the major attractions of its grown-up peers, it’s distinguished by the baked-in safety features designed to protect users from questionable content, and allay parental concerns, while not preventing kids from participating in what has become a major facet of young adult life.
Everloop’s model is COPPA-compliant — meaning it meets all of the rules set out by the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. It also includes a patent-pending Privacy Panel that makes sure members’ privacy is protected and that parents have the ability to monitor their children’s activities online. Brand submissions to the network are well-vetted by the company itself, and its earned a bevy of third-party safety certifications. It’s Privo Kids Privacy and Safety Assured, a certified merchant on Authorize.net, and CRISP certified.
Based in Danville, Calif., Everloop has raised a round of angel funding.
Tags: DemoBeat, DEMOSpring10
Companies: Everloop
People: Hilary DeCesare

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