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Safer site for young net users
1:20pm Friday 7th September 2012 in News
THE next social networking craze may have been inspired by a Pershore selfdefence class.
IT expert Lee Meere, aged 31, and best friend Phillip Whitehead, 33, have launched a new social community called Pili Pala and hope that it will go on to become a household name like Facebook or Twitter.
But while they hope to replicate the popularity of other sites, they believe a strong emphasis on safety and privacy sets it aside from other alternatives. The pair originally thought of Pili Pala – which takes its name from the Welsh word for butterfly – as a way for members of the children’s self-defence class they run in Pershore to keep in touch. But as Mr Meere created the website – a task that took him five months – he realised the project potentially had wider appeal.
He said: “A few months ago I was shocked when one of our eight-year-old pupils asked if I would become their friend on Facebook.
“When I pointed out they were too young, I was told, ‘All my friends are on it’.
What tends to happen is the age they choose for their profile is over 18 so they fall outside any protection measures that are put in place.”
Mr Meere believes they have overcome those issues by creating a site that is purpose- built for use by the whole family.
“Initially the plan was to make a network solely for children, but research indicated that parents would feel more comfortable if they could join the site their children were on,” he said.
“While we take privacy seriously, all messages and chat logs can and will be moderated to ensure a safe environment for everybody.”
Visit mypilipala.com to find out more.