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A lot of sites require users registering to be 13 years of age. Is there any actual law that requires this?

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I assume you're talking about the United States? –  Mark Henderson Oct 25 '10 at 0:36

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That's because of COPPA - Children's Online Privacy Protection Act. From WikiPedia:

The act, effective April 21, 2000, applies to the online collection of personal information by persons or entities under U.S. jurisdiction from children under 13 years of age. It details what a website operator must include in a privacy policy, when and how to seek verifiable consent from a parent or guardian, and what responsibilities an operator has to protect children's privacy and safety online including restrictions on the marketing to those under 13. While children under 13 can legally give out personal information with their parents' permission, many websites altogether disallow underage children from using their services due to the amount of paperwork involved.

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