What Parents Need to Know about the IMVU App

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What Parents Need to Know about the IMVU App

October 20, 2017
Green Zone

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Green Zone.
We believe this app is a STARTING POINT for your student, but that you must monitor your student on every app they are on. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Gray Zone

Parents and Teachers: Please note this app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Gray Zone.
Parents should participate in these apps with students to keep them safe.
Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Red Zone

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed in the SmartSocial.com Red Zone. We believe this app is not safe for students to use without adult supervision. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Dangerous Social media challenges

Parents and Teachers: This app is listed as a Dangerous Social Media Challenge. Knowing about social media challenges before your teen does can help you keep them safe before an incident occurs. Join our weekly newsletter to learn about the 100+ App Reviews at SmartSocial.com

Table of Contents

IMVU is the #1 avatar-based social experience. Users create custom avatars and use them to chat with strangers in random chats or 3D chat rooms.

What is the IMVU app?

  • IMVU is an app where users create custom avatars and use them to chat with strangers in random chats or 3D chat rooms
  • An avatar is a figure representing a particular person in video games, forums, etc.
  • The “chat now” feature randomly pairs users with other users
  • Users can then decide if they want to chat or skip the other IMVU user
  • Users can post pictures of their avatar in different poses and backgrounds (both 2D and 3D)
  • In addition to pictures, users can post text
  • Daily Spin is a feature where users can “spin a wheel” and win prizes. Prizes can be credits for the app or new clothes for avatars
  • Users can purchase credits using real money
  • Credits can be used to purchase new clothes, accessories, hairstyles, different avatars, or poses

Why should parents care?

  • This app is not appropriate for students
  • Although the app specifically states that it is not meant for kids under the age of 17, there are instances where teens use the app anyway
  • All profiles are public
  • This app can be used by predators to try and get victims to share their phone number, send photos, and video chat off of the app
  • Some users of the app bully others who don’t spend real money on buying better clothes or new furniture for their avatar
  • Content on the app can be explicit and inappropriate for students
  • Chat rooms are unmoderated
  • Users can buy inappropriate and suggestive clothes for their avatars
  • IMVU encourages users to chat with strangers
  • Avatars can simulate explicit acts

IMVU app in the news

Children rated ASKfm, Omegle, IMVU, as some of the most risky sites in the major survey, leading the NSPCC to urge parents to look beyond the well known [apps] and find out about the more obscure apps their children are using. –Telegraph
There seem to be cracks in the system that allow adult content to filter out into public areas, making [IMVU] iffy for users under 18. –Common Sense Media

What can parents do?

  • If your teen has the IMVU app, have them delete it and discuss the dangers of the app
  • Check out our Parent App Guide page and encourage your student to use apps in our Green Zone
  • Before giving them access to social media, ensure that students know who they should and should not engage with online
  • Teach your teen to never share personal information or try to meet a stranger in-person that they met online
  • Have a discussion with your student and ensure that they always ask for permission before downloading any apps or buying anything on their apps
  • Regularly monitor your student’s digital footprint

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