The cross : How many child influencers are there in France?
Bruno Studer: It’s hard to say because, for the moment, there is no official count. Having said that, it is very clear that the phenomenon does exist. Some parents portray the daily life of their children in videos that they relay on social networks. They show them playing, unwrapping gifts, shopping, etc.
The problem is that behind this apparently amateurish exercise sometimes lies a very lucrative activity and a form of disguised child labor. Indeed, some of these channels are followed by thousands, even millions of subscribers. They then generate very comfortable income and parents sometimes even stop working.
→ CRITICAL. “Children are kings”, by Delphine de Vigan: families caught up in the Web
Two problems therefore arise: is it normal that only parents receive this money? Is this a disguised form of child labor? Some may shoot several videos a week, which has repercussions on their education and fatigue.
Which answer your text, which comes into force from the 1er April, does it bring?
BS: Children will be better protected. The money generated by their videos, first of all, will no longer be collected directly by their parents but placed in an account at the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations until they are 18 years old.
In addition, their activity will be subject to the same regime as that of child models or actors: the prefectures will notably check their weekly working time because child labor is prohibited in France. Exceptions are therefore very tightly controlled and the Internet should not escape this rule.
In addition, we establish a right to be forgotten: without waiting to turn 18, any child can request the removal of the videos on which he appears. It’s not necessarily easy for a college student to assume that images of him as a baby in diapers are circulating because his family was then engaged in a partnership with a brand.
Do you plan to go further?
BS: I think we will have to rethink the concept of “parental control”. The applications of the technical tool are already known. But we must also think about what this “parental control” can be exercised by the people themselves. This requires digital education for parents, but also the redefinition of certain rights.
→ CHRONICLE. Zombiegram Creatures
For example, is it relevant that parents are the holders of the image rights of their children? I think, for my part, that they should be the defenders, which is not at all the same thing.