Channel One’s deceptive arcade

January 3, 2012

From Jim Metrock:

The website for Channel One News has always been one of the uglier parts of this controversial youth marketing company.

The adults running the site act as if their young visitors are merely a source of revenue. There is little protection for young people who venture on the site.  Channel One’s “Arcade” is a good example.  It looks like there are free online games for kids to play and there are some free ones but very few. Most are like the ones below. They appear to be free because there is no indication that there will be a charge. There is no wording that indicates that this section is an advertisement. Channel One rarely calls attention to ads being advertising. Channel One treats all visitors like grown adults that have a lot of life experience.


Click on one of the games above and you come to a page like this:



Uh oh, now a young person sees this is an advertisement not a service provided by Yes there is a stripped down version that can be downloaded, but that too is an advertisement.  Nowhere does Channel One News err on the side of their young web visitors.  The price of this game appears to be pretty steep for the quality of the games Channel One has in its Arcade.  Note: I did not download this particular game, but have downloaded others in the same price range from their site.

If a young person decides to buy the game they go to the shopping cart page. There they are offered the opportunity to buy “download insurance.”


There should be no charge for allowing a child to re-download a game they have paid for. Now the $7 game is $11.



Of course $11 is better than $20 or $24.



When it’s time to pay for Channel One’s games there is no wording about the need for parental permission. (Most of Channel One’s audience are pre-teens in middle school.)  As long as a credit card number is typed in, that’s fine with Channel One.  I don’t know if I would call Channel One’s Arcade a scam, but it should make parents and educators uncomfortable.  To think: this is the company that Promethean wants to introduce to elementary schoolchildren.


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