A Press release from the LEGO Group about the Kid Friendly Social Media App, LEGO Life…:
The safe social network app for children developed by the LEGO Group has been named winner of one of the leading international awards honouring excellence on the internet.
LEGO® Life, the safe social network for children under the age of 13, is named Webby Winner in the Mobile Sites and Apps: Family and Kids category. In addition to receiving this award granted through the review of an expert jury, LEGO Life also won The Webby People’s Voice Award in the same category: https://www.webbyawards.com/winners/2018/mobile-sites-apps/general/family-kids/lego-life/
“We are very happy and honoured that LEGO Life has been granted with this award – not only getting recognition by experts in the digital field but also by the public vote. It is truly a testament to the fact that it is possible to provide safe digital spaces for children in a playful and fun way”, said Rob Lowe, head of Kids Engagement at the LEGO Group.
Digital layer to physical play
Since the launch of the app in January 2017, LEGO Life has been downloaded more than 6 million times, and roughly one million children share content through the app every month.
The app lets children personalize their LEGO experience through direct interaction with their favourite LEGO characters, exclusive content, an in-depth 3D LEGO minifigure avatar creator, and fun building inspiration and challenges. LEGO Life also introduces a custom LEGO Emoji Keyboard with which children and tweens can communicate about what they create in LEGO form, as well as comment on what their peers share.
“Whenever we develop digital experiences, we aim to create something that complement and enhance LEGO play. With LEGO Life we have focused on creating a platform that amplifies the joy of building and pride of creation – further unleashing creativity among children and tweens on a much broader scale. In addition to all the wonderful feedback we get from our users, this award is a lovely recognition of what we have achieved,” Lowe said.
Safe space with no personal information
In addition to being fun and engaging, LEGO® Life is also safe. Designed to be a child’s first digital social experience, taking users by the hand and introducing them to some of the core concepts of a social network, LEGO Life prevents children from sharing personal information, images, or anything that could allow users to identify and locate one another.
For example, when a user creates an account, he or she uses the random name generator to create a silly 3-word mix for a display name, such as “DukeCharmingShrimp” or “ChairmanWilyDolphin.” In place of real or facial photos for LEGO Life profiles, users create their avatar by selecting the LEGO Minifigure or Minidoll of their choice, adding clothing, hair and more to create their virtual persona.
All content and comments on LEGO® Life are monitored by LEGO employees who specialize in moderation to ensure that it is LEGO Life-appropriate and child-friendly. Use of the LEGO Emoji Keyboard replaces actual text when commenting on user-generated content. Commenting is tightly controlled and pre-moderated while emoji comments are post-moderated, keeping communication simple, universal, positive and fun.
Adherence to the LEGO® Safety Pledge and UNICEF Standards
The LEGO® Safety Pledge provides a method for parents to talk to their children about digital safety while establishing a shared commitment to ground rules for online social behaviour, and LEGO Life policies and procedures adhere to these ground rules. Additionally, LEGO Group has an ongoing partnership with UNICEF through which the company received guidance as to how to ensure child safety in developing LEGO Life. UNICEF and LEGO Group also partnered to develop a tool which enables companies to assess their current efforts around children’s digital safety.
The Webby Award is presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), a 2000+ member judging body. The Academy is comprised of Executive Members (leading Web experts, business figures, luminaries, visionaries and creative celebrities), and Associate Members who are former Webby Winners, Nominees and other Internet professionals.
I post the occasional photo on LEGO Life, and find it a great environment to scroll through a selection of people’s creations and images. A certain number of videos, building tips and images from the AFOL community, to inspire kids, crop up in the feed on a regular basis, and I find myself drawing inspiration from what I see here.
Do you use LEGO Life? Do your kids? What has your family’s experience been like? Why not leave your comments below.