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MoshiMonsters – new parental controls, consent “assumed”

From the latest newsletter, at the bottom (after the big graphics and announcement about “moshlings” – aka mini-moshi-monsters (my – this is getting a bit infinitely recursive, isn’t it? Now your child’s pet has a pet :). I’m still trying to attract an interesting Moshling (the minigame to get them is Animal Crossing crossed with a Fruit Machine / One-arm bandit – makes me think of ZT Online’s chests, although without the Real Money part), but already I find myself wanting the next hit: a moshi-mini-moshling-ling. Ling. Mini. *ahem*)).

ANYWAY … here’s the news bit – changes to the parental controls:

By popular demand, in July we added the Official Moshi Monsters Forum where Monster Owners meet, learn, create and and chat via pre-moderated message boards. The Forum is like a larger version of our Moshi pinboards. We’ve designed a new approval system for our trusted members like you to post without having to wait for approval. No need to worry though; every forum post may be reported at the press of a button and brought to the attention of our Moderators in an instant. The only change is with the new system, active and trusted forum members won’t have to wait several hours for their posts to appear. And we continue to monitor the forums all day and night, as we do the entire website.

For PARENTS: If you wish for more details, we’ll be happy to phone you with the auto-approve posting criteria. You may email us at if you’d like to set up a phone call.

If you you do not wish for your child to participate in the Moshi forums, please contact us at and we will deactivate their account and delete the account within 30 days. Please include the child’s Monster Owner name and the email address used to register the account.

By reading this email, you agree that you understand the changes to the site since you registered your child and that you agree to let your child remain a member of (the friendliest site online!). If you’d like to reply to us with consent, feel free to reply and send the word YES in the reply.

I’m a bit confused – it seemes to be saying that:

  • BOTH: the manual post-by-post moderation system has been replaced by “assumed OK” posting, and by reading this email you consent to that
  • AND: you need to consent to that by replying to the email with the word YES in the reply

I’m sure it just means the latter (the former wouldn’t make much sense). Given that the newsletter wasn’t proofread (“If you you do not wish”), I wonder if perhaps that sentence was left in by accident from an early draft. Perhaps the final decision on “assumed consent” versus “active consent required” was taken quite late in the process, and there were two alternate versions of the text up to the last minute.

Anyway, flippant commentary and minor pedantry aside, it’s great to see that Moshimonsters is continuing to open up communication, and gradually evolve into something akin to a social space, or online game, from the almost exclusively single-player experience it’s been so far.

(I’ll probably do a proper post about Moshlings later … once I’ve had the spare time to grind for one; in a good way, I’m rather busy at the moment with other stuff)

2 replies on “MoshiMonsters – new parental controls, consent “assumed””

Oh, and if that “implied consent” paragraph ISN’T a mistake, it spells an interesting combination with the footer from the same email:

“OPT-out procedure – How to unsubscribe to marketing emails:
This message was sent to you on at your request as a registered user of If you do not wish to receive Moshi Monster marketing and promotional email from Moshi Monsters, please email us at and type UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject header of the email. We’re sad to see you go. We’ll keep the furry light on for you!”

So, what’s the legal status of people who’ve previously opted-out of “marketing and promotional email from Moshi Monsters”, and so never receive OR read this email – is the company exposed to some form of liability for the fact they never had a chance to express consent one way or the other?

Nah – I’m sure the assumed consent is just a mistake.

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