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New tools help parents manage online play
May 16, 2008

Integrated timer lets parents limit their child's time playing Club Penguin

 

KELOWNA, BC - May 16, 2008 - Disney Club Penguin (www.clubpenguin.com), one of the most popular and fastest-growing virtual worlds for children, is offering parents new tools to provide greater control of, and involvement in, their child's online entertainment experience.

Club Penguin's new parent features allow adults to logon and view their child's account history (including any bans and account payments), change their child's password and choose whether their child can chat by selecting from pre-approved phrases or by typing in their own messages. An integrated timer, which lets parents set the time of day and duration of their child's visit to Club Penguin, will be released later this month.

"While Club Penguin offers children a world of opportunity to play and use their imaginations online, as parents ourselves we understand the value of making sure kids also spend time away from the computer playing sports and being with their friends," said Lane Merrifield, general manager and co-founder of Club Penguin. "We hope the timer and other new parent features are useful tools for parents who are looking for new ways to manage the time their children spend online."

Club Penguin, a snow-covered, virtual island populated by colourful, animated penguins, is committed to providing a safe online experience that doesn't compromise creativity or fun. Players create a personalized penguin, waddle around, interact with friends and engage in a variety of fun games and activities.

Club Penguin's newest mini-game, Paint By Letters, gives children a fun way to practice reading, spelling and keyboarding through creative storytelling In the game, players type along with the onscreen words and make choices on what they want to see next to help bring the stories to life. By correctly typing to fill in the text, players complete each line of the story and activate the accompanying, animated, graphic images and sound effects. There's a surprise in store on every page, and throughout each book, children can choose from a selection of different words, allowing them to change the elements of the story and the pictures that go with it as the story unfolds.

Club Penguin is designed for six to 14-year-olds but is open to children of all ages. The site is free to use and enjoy, however a subscription membership provides access to additional features that enhance the Club Penguin experience. Club Penguin's goal is to provide a fun and safe online experience through the use of sophisticated filtering technology and a team of highly trained moderators. Third-party advertising of any kind is prohibited.

Purchased by the Walt Disney Company in August 2007, Club Penguin recently opened an international office in Brighton, England, dedicated to providing additional player support and moderation. It's the first time Club Penguin has offered local support to players outside North America.

"The opening of our Club Penguin office in the United Kingdom is the first of many steps we will take to build on the international reach of the Walt Disney Internet Group to bring the wonderful, creative experience of Club Penguin to a wider audience around the world," says Steve Wadsworth, president, Walt Disney Internet Group. "We look forward to engaging and entertaining millions more children around the globe as we continue this expansion."

 

NOTES TO EDITORS:

 

About Walt Disney Internet Group

The Walt Disney Internet Group (WDIG) offers a compelling mix of interactive entertainment and informational content and services for Internet and mobile devices for audiences around the world. WDIG is both a developer of unique new media experiences specifically designed for Internet and mobile media and a developer of new platforms for distributing content selected from broad, existing entertainment divisions and libraries of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) or its affiliated companies. With a portfolio of products and services designed with quality and guest safety in mind, WDIG's integration of Disney's unmatched breadth of content with a best-practices approach to Internet and mobile technology drives multiple revenue streams from premium content offerings, advertising and ecommerce. WDIG's suite of properties includes Disney.com, Family.com, Movies.com and mDisney mobile entertainment. WDIG is an industry leader in online virtual worlds for kids and families, with offerings including Disney Club Penguin, Disney's Toontown Online, Pirates of the Caribbean Online and Disney Fairies Pixie Hollow. WDIG is headquartered in North Hollywood, Calif. WDIG content is available directly or through third parties in many major markets worldwide, including the Americas, Europe, and Asia Pacific.

 

For more information contact:

clubpenguinmedia@disney.com