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YouTube agrees to pay up to $200 million in FTC settlement: Report

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Google will reportedly pay a fine of between $150 and $200 million to the Federal Trade Commission as a part of a settlement agreement. The FTC has investigating whether YouTube violated children’s privacy laws with its data collection practices, and it could implement additional regulations as a part of the settlement.

A report from Politico said FTC commissioners voted 3 to 2, along party lines, to approve the settlement, which is subject to review by the Department of Justice.

The FTC levied a $5 billion fine against Facebook for privacy violations in July, and TikTok, a popular video sharing app, paid a $5.7 million fine in February for collecting data from children without requesting permission from parents.

The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires companies to request parental consent before collecting personal data from users under the age of 13. In June, US Senator Edward Markey asked for the FTC to hold YouTube accountable for potential violations of COPPA, and laid out a series of changes to ensure that the company was complying with federal regulations.

YouTube recently launched a web portal for YouTube Kids, which could mark a major shift for separating children’s content on the world’s largest video streaming platform. Reports from Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal in June said YouTube was considering shifting all children’s content to YouTube Kids, which has existed for several years as a standalone, secondary app with increased levels of moderation.

Read more: YouTube will reportedly stop serving targeted ads on videos for kids in a move that could cost it tens of millions of dollars per year

Though YouTube Kids has existed as an app since 2015, YouTube has never been a separate website designed for children. Youtubekids.com launched earlier this week, and walks parents through the process of establishing parental controls and security measures for their children.

YouTube will also consider disabling the platform’s recommendation feature for children’s programming and stop using targetted ads based on data collected from young users, according to a recent report.

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