Huffington Post has reported that when 11-year-old Zachary Marks’ parents found out that he lied about his age to sign up for a Facebook account, they banned him from using the social network, KSDK News 5 reports. But instead of moping about it, the South Florida pre-teen did what any young tech entrepreneur would do: He enlisted the help of his five siblings to create his own social network.
Zachary’s now three-month-old site, Grom Social, describes itself as a “social network for the youth” and had already attracted nearly 7,000 users. The term “Grom” in the title refers to a young surfer, like Zachary himself.
Darren Marks, Zachary’s father and the founder of an energy drink and food company, saw the website as a potential investment and registered it as a company. Marks helps his son to ensure that the site includes parental controls and is in compliance with the Children Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).
“It has just started to catch on,” Marks told KSDK. “It’s amazing how this is all happening and taking off.”
According to USA Today, the site receives about 2,000 unique views and 6,000 page views per day – it’s small, but steadily growing.
Grom Social joins the market with rivals like Everloop.com, a social network for children aged 5-13. This month, Everloop launched the first social mobile app for kids,“Everloop Goobit.”