Complaint - MySpace allowing underage minors to post web pages

Review by Parental Justice on 2007-01-24
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA -- I recently discovered my underage son posting a personal web page on where he first claimed he was 17, then edited it months later to the age of 15. The owners at claim they do not allow any minors under the age of 15 to post a web page. They also claim they take underage postings seriously and will delete them. I have contacted them on every front they have and all I get is an automated canned reply. My son is 12 1/2.

This company owes a civic responsibility to make sure a parent's concerns are heard and they have done nothing. I am contacting my local authroities now and my state Attorney General's office. The US Government claims at any given time, there are 50,000 pedophiles on surfing for young boys and girls. We as parents need to ramp up the heat and stop companies who allow minors to post personal web pages on their sites leaving them vulnerable to predators. is not a good example of protecting our children and they should be shut down.

Does anyone out there agree with me....I want to hear your comments.....
Comments:28 Replies - Latest reply on 2008-03-15
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
I do not agree with you. I believe it's the parents responsibility to monitor what their children are doing online.

Myspace has no responsibility to protect our children.
Posted by Liz on 2007-01-24:
I don't think the public has the obligation to raise your son. That's your job, and you need to take responsibility. Sit down with your son and talk to him about the dangers of strangers in real life AS WELL as online. They are just as real, and just as dangerous because he might be chatting with someone who says she is a 14 year old girl when in all actuality he could very be a 65 year old man looking for a victim to prey on
Posted by bho55 on 2007-01-24:
You should install software to monitor your children's activities on the pc.
Posted by tnchuck100 on 2007-01-24:
There is no absolutely foolproof way for MySpace to determine someones true age. They are dependent on the information the user provides. I am sure if your son had indicated he was 12 they would not have permitted him to post.

Ultimately, it is the parents responsibility to control/monitor the childs access to the internet.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
Parental Justice, while I do agree with you in principle and cannot say that myspace is 100% at fault here. First you said your son lied, did you discipline him? Has he been made aware that what he is doing is a bad thing and he is doing a “WRONG” thing?

Do you know what the parental control is for and how to work it? That is step 1. take care of you part first.

Step 2. Myspace has no way of knowing how old someone is if they lie and that is what is going on here. Your son lied as much as the creeps we call pedophiles although he is a kid, it is still a lie and your responsibly as his parent to do the best you can to stop him from doing it again.

You can never be 100% sure he is not doing it somewhere else and to that I don’t know the answer. But if we simply shut down everything that might hurt the children then nothing will be left on. Which takes us back to step 1. “It start in the home”. Best of luck to you
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
I don't get it. How's myspace any more dangerous then let's say being an alter-boy at a catholic church? Should we forbid children from going to church because of the actions of a few. FloridaLizardQueen said everything I'm thinking so I'll ditto those remarks. Times change – myspace and the other online blogs are part of the modern times. Children susceptible to online predators are just as susceptible to mall predators.
Posted by S on 2007-01-24:
The only problem with comparing online predators to offline predators is parental education. Many parents are not aware of the dangers of forums like myspace for kids... and they don't take it seriously enough to monitor what their kids are doing online. Would a parent let their 12 year old go to the mall at night alone? No. So why are you letting them online alone at night with thousands of strangers they can talk with? Parents need to get more education and more tools to help control their children's access to the internet.
Posted by bill on 2007-01-24:
Please don't bother your state's AG office with this. It's not thier job to parent your kid. Take your son's computer privallages away. He has lied and shown that he is not resposable enough yet to use the computer unsupervised.
Posted by Timboss on 2007-01-24:
Talk about a two-edged sword - the Internet is that. I cannot add much to what is above - the responsiblity is yours, as a parent, not a cyberspace database to protect our children. Hmmm, where is HAL when you need him.

So you alert the authorities that your son is a liar, now what?
Posted by spiderman2 on 2007-01-24:
You know what else we as parents need to do? We need to supervise our children when they are on the computer. We need to know what they are doing and what sites they are visiting. We need to make sure that the computers are located where everyone can see NOT in the child's bedroom and we need to properly supervise and take responsibility for our own children. I don't need the government to do that for me.
Posted by heaven17 on 2007-01-24:
The problem is your son's dishonesty, not MySpace. If you want the goverment to parent your kid, what other rights are you willing to toss out in the name of shirking your own duties? I'd advise you to watch him close because if he's lying about this, he's a prime target for those 50,000 pedophiles you mentioned. Step up and be responsible for the person you created. If you don't communicate with him, the wrong person will.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
Yeah, this one is pretty much on you.
Posted by N. on 2007-01-24:
Who is allowing a 12 y/o online without supervision? BigBigNoNo. If you are going to let him online then supervise by being in the room with the monitor facing you or get some good parental controls to block all sites except the ones you OK. You can NOT trust your kids to monitor themselves.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
4 words: Get password - delete site.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-24:
Everything they said! ^^^
Posted by Slimjim on 2007-01-24:
Like has been said, I can't understand how you could expect myspace to have been able to verify his age. It's not like they are in the house with you are.
Posted by Parental Justice on 2007-01-25:
It is obvious most of you are kids that have a page on myspace. In case you had not been educated enough at your ripe old age, it is the responsibility of the web hosting company to provide certain assurances and safe guards to protect underage children or minors from predators or pedophiles who post web pages on their site under false pretenses. Under certain scrutinies of law, provides open space for those 14 or older to post personal web pages. They also must provide certain protections for minors under state and federal laws.

You speak out of ignorance of not having all the facts. My son does not live with me so it is nearly impossible for me to access his account from the computer he set up the web page on or to control his actions when he is 45 miles away. His mother refuses to patrol his efforts as well compounding the efforts. Plus you all ASSUME he lives with me. If you look at the divorce statistics in this country, a majority of families are divorced where one parent does not have access or control over the actions or doings of their children in many cases when they see them every other weekend or infrequently. My son will not return my phone calls or e-mails now because his mother has told him I am trying to get his underage deceptive site removed. Facts are: He is underage, lying about his age to set up a site (says he is 17 when he is 12 1/2) and is decieving those who visit it. 14 is the minimum age for a web page on this web site. Myspace also says in its FAQ section to inform them of any site abuses or underage children posting web sites on their site so they can be deleted, yet when they are informed of this over and over again, they do nothing. That is where the good faith efforts on their part go out the window and open the gates to a lawsuit.

You children posting to this message have little knowledge of the law and speak only from the point that you enjoy using MS as a communication tool with your friends, the way it is supposed to be used. Any underage child who posts a web site on MS under false pretenses should have that site removed. PERIOD. How would you feel if you had a child not living with you that did this, and they fell to the efforts of a predator? Would you still feel good about yourself? claims to take these types of situations very serious, but do nothing to protect kids in these types of accounts set up on their sites. When a parent does have parental control, I agree, they are required to take the necessary steps to ensure their child's safety. When those controls do not exist, it is difficult at best to make it happen short of a lawsuit or legal envolvement. They have many different types of links to family sites, protection and kid safety sites and more, and protray a distinct concern for child safety, but do little to facilitate it when it is brought to their attention.

Say what you want, this is still a free country, but the fact remains as it stands.
Posted by N. on 2007-01-25:
If anyone spoke out of ignorance it is because you failed at posting enough information. And I am sorry but it is sad if you expect us to assume the child doesn't live with you based on divorce statistics. Seems to me the problem lies with a parent (the mother) who doesn't have good child rearing abilities, and an absent father who has lost control of the child rearing. I think it is great that you make an effort to track the child's online movements, but not many people are buying into the blame game you want to promote. If someone is lying about age, how is a website to know? The control MUST be at he other end of the www or it is the child who loses.

If I were in your position I would take the other parent to court for a change in custody or at the very least get a court to order that child off the computer.

BTW, this site doesn't hold much interest for children. Not likely any of the responding posts were from kids.
Posted by Liz on 2007-01-25:
For one thing, we are NOT all children here, Parental Justice. I only thought your son lived with you because you didn't say otherwise. We are not mind readers when you fail to provide enough information pertaining to the situation. No one is to blame for your child's actions and choices to ignore the set guidelines set forth by Myspace except maybe your son and whoever enables him to lie they way he did about his age just to have a profile on the site. It is not Myspace's obligation either to babysit kids either. So before raking us over the coals for our comments, you should give us a little more than just the bare-bones of what the issue is.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-01-25:
Ditto. I'd like to see your venture on Dr. Phil.
Posted by mjholly on 2007-02-07:
You have a point. I think underage minors under 18 need parental supervision on MySpace. MySpace is cooperating with authorities to protect underage users from internet pedophiles. I suggest you supervise your son when he is on the internet. That is the best way to protect him from those evil pedophiles and sex offenders!
Posted by Parental Justice on 2007-02-07:
It proved my point that those who always think they have the answers no matter what information is given, they find fault with those who are constructively trying to find answers to a qualified problem.

Myspcae did the right thing. They reviewed my son's site, and deleted it. As for those who bi tch about me losing control of my son, there is some loss of control, especially when he does not live with me and his mother does not watch what he does or controls his presence on the web. Only those who have or are now in that same situation can understand what a parent goes through in a non-custodial situation. Myspace serves a good purpose for those who use it properly. As with any new communication device or option, it can also be abused and abused by those who simply chose that path. I am not going to go on and on here for those who simply have a mission to bi tch about another's parenting abilities. If you had a son or daughter that did not live with you and you learned they were involved in illegal activities, would you not reach out to family, public forums, your shrink, or the school counselors for help?

Put yourself in that place and then point the finger as you look in the mirror.

myspace did the right thing and there's nothing you winning chumps can do about it......
Posted by mjholly on 2007-02-14:
Mam, I believe you are just as responsible for your son's safety. MySpace is doing a good job of deteriing internet pedophilia and predators and has even cooperated with soem states and jurisdictions to help protect children from internet monsters. You should start keeping a closer eye on your son. I suggest do not let him use MySpace until at least age 16 or 18.
Posted by Liz on 2007-02-20:
I believe the author of the original blog later posted that his son doesn't live with him, but with his ex wife. My only comment at this point is that I hope things got resolved and the author has some peace of mind.
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-03-22:
It is not their fault it is your son's fault. He is the one that is lying about his age. If you do contact the legal department you could possibly have him taken away because you are not monitoring him online. You can always block that site if you really cared about your son and were not too lazy. Someone should take that kid away from you until you face reality. You say we are ignorant, but you are the one that is ignorant, and it is with ignorance with your son(a human being) safety. You are not respobsible enough to be a parent, all you do is make excuses. Hopefully the mother has full rights to him. Hopefully your wife uses this information against you so you lose all contact with him. I also think you are making your wife look like the bad guy because you hate her which is having a bad impression of your son. Think of someone else for a change. It is not always about you.
Posted by gimeabreak_24 on 2007-09-02:
How would they be able to know for sure how old your child is. That is your responsiblity to monitor your childs internet usage and even what he watches on TV. If not you then the mother. Your child is 12 and online without supervision? For the amount of time to create a page?? Come on now, don't blame Tom for your problems. Myspace makes sure that the profiles are private when under 18. I am 25 with kids of my own. You need to be more concered about the boy's mother and not myspace!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by troy2000me on 2008-03-15:
Your son lied, he said he was 17. If he entered an age of 12 he would not have been allowed to join. It is your fault
Posted by D. on 2008-03-15:
I'm going to have to check this out...My niece told me she had set up a MySpace page for my great-niece (her niece)...and my great-niece is only 11. She said she has it as a personal page where she has to ok someone to view it...but that still bothers me because people work their way though things like that. I wasn't aware of the age requirement.

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