One on one adult chats
Skout announced its decision to end its teen app recently, in a blog post.
The company also described its ongoing vigilance in trying to keep malicious adults outside of its teen circle: “We deploy advanced, proprietary technology that continuously monitors activity on the network to identify users whose behavior appears unusual, inappropriate or suspicious.
In a second instance case, a 15-year-old Ohio girl has accused a 37-year-old man of rape.
And in the third, a 13-year-old boy accused a 21-year-old Wisconsin man of sexual assault.
Its webpage states, “Life is short, you are busy and people are having fun without you right now.
So start Skouting and find your party, anytime, anywhere.” The site has also been billed as an online flirting site.
(Flirting via one’s mobile device means exchanging photos, chatting, and if others’ locations are nearby, possibly meeting up with them in order to hook up with a fellow Skout user.) The company that invented Skout is a San Francisco-based startup that bills itself as a mobile service for people who want to meet others who are interested in chatting, networking, or flirting.
This April, Skout received its first round of outside funding, receiving a reported million in venture capital.
There is no word on when the teen ban will be lifted, though the CEO said he hopes it will be back online “soon.” If Skout Can’t Keep Predators Out, What Sites Can?
Many people access the Skout app through Facebook, although Facebook and Skout are independent companies. According to , more than 15 % of Skout’s users, in a recent count, fell between the ages of 13 and 17.
(Facebook does not allow users under 13, but it has been studying ways to safely let younger users onto its network, since new studies show that many kids under 13 already have accounts on Facebook by lying about their ages.) Skout markets its mobile app as “one of the largest mobile networks for meeting new people.” Last year, the company designed its under-18 group app, to help teens meet new people and flirt. (Under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), even thirteen-year-olds can access an adult chat site if their parents consent.) But what was meant to be a place for 13-to-17-year-olds to find a date with fellow teens nearby has now turned into a scary tale.
If so, then law enforcement, social-media entrepreneurs, and parents all may need to think about ways to discourage such business models.
Skout’s Teen App Skout offers a mobile app and social-media platform that allows people to meet up.
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: Three teens are allegedly raped or sexually exploited after meeting adults on a “teens only” flirting site. And as a result, last week, Skout—a company that provides both adult-only and teen-only “flirting” sites—announced that, for now at least, it was shelving its teen app in light of the allegations.