10 Dumbest “Educational” Programs on TV

I LOVE this list! It says everything I would say about these shows. I've banned most of these shows in my home. Here's a taste:


When the subject of stupid children’s shows comes up, Teletubbies usually springs up somewhere in the back of your mind. There’s a reason for that; it’s because it really is one of the absolute worst offenders on this list. Aside from the obvious creepiness — they’re extremely creepy — this show is a complete waste of broadcast time. It was apparently meant for a “pre-school” audience, but wound up having a fan base mostly made up of college-aged potheads — and even they said it was creepy. The four main characters run around, in a morbidly-obese ignorant bliss, basically doing nothing all day long, while occasionally stopping to worship their sun-god which is apparently an infant. It makes absolutely no sense, and kids who watch it aren’t developing anything in their heads except for a mold-like mush.

See the rest of the list here.

FarmVille user runs up £900 debt (That's like $1400 in the U.S.)

From the Guardian:

A mother has warned of the risk of children spending hundreds of pounds on "free" online games available through Facebook after her 12-year-old son ran up bills of more than £900 without her knowledge.

The woman, who prefers to remain anonymous, discovered last month that her son had spent more than £900 on FarmVille. He had emptied his own savings account of £288 and had used her credit card to the tune of £625 to pay the bills.

FarmVille, one of the most popular games on Facebook, allows members to manage a virtual farm by planting, growing and harvesting crops, trees and livestock. New users are given virtual coins to set up their farm, and the revenue from matured crops can be used to maintain it. But those who are desperate to progress more quickly can buy extra virtual coins using real cash.

The mother said: "The first use of my card was on 14 March. I discovered it on the 29th and the card was stopped at that point. Any transactions after that date were already in the system, so what I thought was a £427 spend turned into £625 over the next few days.

"The total spend is about £905, but the credits are still rolling in. Facebook and [game creator] Zynga will not refund anything as [the son] lives in my house. Facebook has disabled his account and Zynga has unhelpfully suggested I use password protection on computers in the future."

She contacted her credit card company, HSBC, but was told she would only qualify for a refund if she reported her son to the police and obtained a crime number. "He would be cautioned and I have been told that this caution would stay with him. Obviously the idea of a stupid farm simulation jeopardising his future earnings is not something that I want to consider," she said.

She added that her son was "very shocked" when confronted with the amount he had spent, but it was clear he knew what he was doing. "When I asked him why he did it he said that they had brought out 'good stuff that I wanted'."

She does not blame Facebook, Zynga or HSBC, saying that her son was the one using the card and is entirely at fault. But she added: "I do think they need to shoulder some responsibility in this business and put systems in place to stop this happening again. The fact that he was using a card in a different name should bring up some sort of security and the online secure payment filter seems to be bypassed for Facebook payments."

A spokeswoman for HSBC said that had the credit card been used on a gambling site it would have started alarm bells ringing for "unusual usage". But because the card had been used to buy Facebook credits HSBC did not consider the transactions to be suspicious, even though £625 was spent in just two weeks.

Michael Arrington, founder of the Techcrunch blog, criticised Zynga last year for "monetising" the game, and warned that people who didn't have access to a credit card to buy extra virtual money could use "pay by mobile" companies instead.

The indebted 12-year-old has not used his mobile to pay for virtual money, his mother said, but only because his older brother lost all his credit buying a ringtone a couple of years ago.

"We sound terribly technologically unaware don't we? I wouldn't mind but I am always explaining that all of these online offers, ringtones and games are a scam designed to take money off stupid people. Kids know best though."

An Interesting Look at the Nintendo Co.

A Look at Nintendo
Via: Online MBA

Gamer Kids

Well, I've passed the gaming gene on to the kids. At ages (almost) 6 and 4, they're really "into" the gaming world. They play age appropriate games, of course, but they play them with all the vigor of a 34 year old man playing "Call of Duty"...I'm looking at you Dear Hubby.

It's so amusing to me to watch them evolve as gamers, too. I never realized how easily it would come to them. Maybe it's because the Wii is so intuitive and the DS has several titles aimed at their age group. All I know is that my (almost) 6 year old son can plop down with a brand new game, and just start playing as though it was his 100th trip into that universe. It's also extremely amused at The Boy's frustration with me when I tried to "help". Now, mind you, I've played TONS of video games, I know my way around a WiiMote, but The Boy was not impressed with my skills. He would sigh and gasp and occasionally give me the MOOOOOOOM! And I smiled.