The Federal Trade Commission today launched a new Web site to introduce kids to key
consumer and business concepts. Set in a shopping mall, http://www.ftc.gov/YouAreHere takes kids on an experiential journey that presents the FTC’s mission and its important role in American commerce. Kids under 12 are reported to spend billions of dollars on goods and services every year.
“FTC.gov/YouAreHere links the important work of the FTC to the lives of children,”
said FTC Chairman William Kovacic. “It teaches kids how to be more savvy consumers by demonstrating the benefits of competition, how advertising can influence buying decisions, and the rules and regulations that many business people deal with. It’s a great tool for parents and teachers who are trying to help kids understand their role in the marketplace.”
The site features animated guides who help visitors navigate a virtual mall and interact with shopkeepers and other consumers. Kids can design and print advertisements for a shoe store, uncover suspicious claims in an ad, and guess the retail price of various candies based on their supply, demand, and production costs. One game that has players match the features of various cell phones with certain audiences illustrates the principles of target marketing; another allows visitors to compare sales pitches from three pizza joints as it explains competition. A short film playing at the cinema illustrates the history of the FTC.
For parents and teachers, the site offers fact sheets that cover advertising, marketing, and competition in more detail, along with ideas for related activities. “We hope that teachers will use the site in classroom activities that involve consumer economics, government, social studies, history, and language arts,” Chairman Kovacic said. “It takes a unique approach to both consumer tips and the role of business and government in daily life.”
The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC's online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,500 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC's Web site provides free information on a variety of consumer topics.
(You Are Here NR.wpd)