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Your Call: What happens when children are socialized by robots?

Mattel's Hello Barbie

On the November 23rd Your Call, we'll discuss what happens when children are socialized by robots. Mattel's release of "Hello Barbie" has stirred controversy over how new toys are changing the concept of playtime.

Mattel's recent unveiling of the new Hello Barbie has consumer's questioning whether or not buying their child a friend is worth the risks. The doll features a WiFi enabled voice box and uses cloud technology to access a data base with over 8,000 questions and phrases. By pressing Hello Barbie's belt buckle, the doll immediately engages your child in conversation. The interactive toy can remember details about the child, such as favorite colors, fruits, or candies. The doll can even remember deaths in the family or divorce, and will steer conversation around upsetting topics. How are toys like this changing the childhood experience?It’s Your Call with Rose Aguilar and you.


Josh Golin is the Executive Director for the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood

Sherry Turkle is the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society at MIT and the founder (2001) and current director of the MIT Initiative on Technology and Self. Sherry is an author, writing on people's relationships with technology.

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