theodp writes "The Washington Post's Elizabeth Flock managed to hold Google's feet to the fire and get an explanation of sorts for why it's making kids cry by disabling their Gmail accounts after years of use. Giving 12-year-olds access to Gmail — unless they are using Google Apps for Education accounts through their school — is proving to be as formidable a task for Google as making renewable energy cheaper than coal. But what about that viral 'Dear Sophie' commercial, asked Flock, in which a father creates a Gmail account for his baby daughter and uses it to send her photos, videos, and messages that chronicle her growing up? 'The implied understanding,' replied a Google spokesman, 'is that the girl in the story does not have access to the account, but that she will have access to it "someday."'"
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