Researchers Show Privacy Policies Are Too Complex for Some Age Groups to Understand

As the tech industry grows, increased scrutiny ends up being placed on the manner in which tech can end up impacting the lives of children everywhere because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up causing damage if it is not reigned in. A lot of people seem to misconstrue this to mean that tech companies need to restrict messaging for kids and the like and while this is certainly an important aspect of this type of thing it is by no means the only aspect that ends up mattering in the long run.

There is also a real problem with user agreements and privacy policies with all things having been considered and taken into account. Pilot Fish Media conducted an analysis of a wide range of websites and found that a small chunk of websites, platforms and publishers had privacy policies that could be considered at least relatively readable by someone or the other who was under the age of 18, and this poses a real problem because the kids that use these sites might not be able to fully understand they are signing up for.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that the readability of the privacy policy of a site is rated through what is called a Flesch score. This takes into account how complicated or simple a particular piece of text is, and it is very important for sites to strive for the highest possible Flesch score. Minors can’t really be stopped from accessing the internet and indeed doing so is something that can cause massive problems because you would be cutting them off from a really essential source of information that they are going to require in their day to day lives.

The site that had the highest Flesch score out of the 80 that were tested and analyzed in this research was the BBC which had a Flesch score of 71. This score is actually not as high as it could be, and one can imagine just how bad things can get when you look at the lower end of the spectrum. The safety of our children is not something that we can compromise on and sites should modify their privacy policies in order to make them as readable as possible from all different perspectives.

Read next: In A World Where Privacy Is Optional, What Is The Cost Of Personal Data
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