Alltel getting serious about parental control

We’re not parents, so pardon us if we don’t agree with many parental views that they should know where their children are at all times. Yes, we’re talking about location tracking, a service that Alltel has just launched. Once parents equip their children with the LG AX8600, the Samsung U520, or the Samsung R510 ‘Wafer’, they’ll be able to see every place their child visits, right from their own mobile phone or even from their home computer. No, we’re not big fans of this. We understand that parents embrace this kind of technology because it ensures that they can locate their child should an emergency arise. However, we don’t see it being used for such a purpose. After all, emergencies don’t happen to everyone every day. The main purpose of this application, of course, is to find out if your child is causing mischief. But kids should cause mischief — it’s part of growing up. To us, this is just another step towards Orwellian overseeing. Don’t believe us? Check it:

The service will also allow parents to interact with the maps, designating specific areas that their child frequents, such as school or the local shopping mall.
See? It’s more spying than for-emergency-only usage. And that’s just wrong. But if you must have it, it’s $9.99 per month, and can be found at MobileBurn]]]>

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  1. Melissa on December 10, 2007 at 9:31 am

    You didn’t need to start your article out by stating you’re not a parent. Your comments make that obvious. Possibly eluding to the fact that you are not too far beyond your teen years.
    Yes, it is for spying. If your child is under 18, you have a right to hold him/her accountable for behaviors. If your child knows he/she is being monitored in some way by mom and dad they are less likely to get into trouble.
    An ongoing issue with parenting these days is that sometimes it is hard to figure out who the adult is in some families. Letting children run rampid without some type of accountability and boundaries only sets them up for failure further in life. That includes still living with parents long after they should have been out of the nest.
    It doesn’t matter if it is in personal life or in business, you have to insepct what you expect to get the desired outcome. In this case, a kid that will grow up to be a responsible person that makes good choices and doesn’t live with mom and dad until he/she is 25 or even older.

  2. Rachael on December 10, 2007 at 3:04 pm

    Just because the author thinks spying isn’t ok doesn’t make it “obvious” he isn’t a parent. I have a ten year old, seven year old and four year old and *I* also think this is spying and WRONG. Holding a child accountable for their behavior and monitoring that behavior in an overzealous fashion are two different things.
    The US government holds us accountable for our behavior but it doesn’t mean it would be ok for them to put a chip in us and monitor us throughout the day. Accountability and tracking are not one in the same. I’m being extreme, but you get the point.
    I don’t need to track my kids whereabouts with something that is the equivalent to an ankle monitor. If I can’t trust them, then I’m doing something very, very wrong and also, as a small side point, they also wouldn’t deserve a cell phone or the freedom of going anywhere outside my supervision.

  3. Max Prepaid Cell phone Guy on January 24, 2009 at 10:29 pm

    I cannot believe how naive Rachael is. She was a good girl growing up.
    She may trust her kids now but look out.
    I had a brother that was raised by the same parents as me that lied and stole every chance he got. He never told them the truth about where he was and what he was doing.
    Tracking your kids bad? I bet she will be really shocked when her kids are arrested for drug use and she will go defend them when they are caught red handed.

  4. robert on July 19, 2010 at 10:21 pm

    thats just creepy for one…and for two, if the parents cant trust their children that much, then why would they get them a cell phone in the first place. Further more, that has to be violating the kids first amendment rights, or do children not have them? also i wonder if that can be hacked into by other people enabling them to track anybodys cell, such as allowing creepers and child molesters to easily find their prey…….
    think about it CHAD!