Well here is the headline we never thought we’d see, but it’s all for a very good cause. Family Watchdog, a registry of information on sex offenders has teamed with Platinum Studios to put this information on mobile devices:

Family Watchdog (www.familywatchdog.us), America’s leading provider of registered sex offender information, today announced a partnership with Platinum Studios (www.PlatinumStudios.com), an entertainment company that controls the world’s largest independent library of comic book characters, to use mobile devices and “edutainment-oriented” content to provide consumers with tools to protect and educate themselves, their families and communities about the threat of sexual predators.

Family Watchdog users are able to conduct searches to view information about where registered sexual offenders live and work, view photos, review conviction details and other important data. Platinum Studios has worked with Family Watchdog to make this information available on mobile devices. Users can set up mobile alerts by visiting www.familywatchdog.us and can also visit the site from any Web-enabled mobile device to access that same information anytime, anywhere. Additionally users can register to receive email and text notifications to alert them when offenders move in or out of their neighborhoods. The Web site and mobile alerts are available in both English and Spanish with other languages in development.

“I have been watching Family Watchdog’s progress in truly saving lives,” said Ed Smart, whose daughter Elizabeth was kidnapped in 2002 and found in 2003. “It’s exciting that Platinum Studios understands the vision and need of Family Watchdog to create new educational content that is family-friendly, promotes awareness and safety, and empowers parents and their children to bring this very serious issue to light in a non-threatening way. I applaud their vision and look forward to supporting their efforts.”

“We have been looking for an even timelier and direct manner to supply Family Watchdog users with this critical information,” said Steve Roddel, chief executive officer and founder of FamilyWatchdog.US. “Platinum Studios’ support allows us to offer the full-functionality of our Web site on mobile devices and we will be working with them to develop comics-based educational content for families.”

Platinum Studios will develop English and Spanish language comics-based content across Web, television and film platforms to further support the partnership. In addition Platinum Studios will work with Family Watchdog to create other opportunities and relationships within the entertainment industry.

“As a parent myself, if our support of Family Watchdog can help just one family or child, I know we have made a difference,” said Platinum Studios chairman and chief executive officer, Scott Mitchell Rosenberg. “I have helped support great causes like the Red Cross, Alzheimer’s Association and Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in the past and look forward to utilizing our experience developing comic properties to help parents and children learn how to prevent a crisis.”

Content will be available on www.familywatchdog.us in mobile, print or online form starting in early 2007.


  1. I wonder if these educational materials will point out what a bad idea is it to focus on sex-offender registries as a way to protect children from predators. Such as the fact that children are more likely to be abused by people they already know and trust, rather than by some stranger who happens to live in the same part of town. Or the fact that most of the people in those registries have no history or likelihood of preying on children. Protecting children from abuse is important… and sex-offender registries are a lousy way to do it. They focus attention where it’s least needed, alarming parents about people who are not a real threat to their children, and giving them a false sense of safety if they don’t find anyone in their neighborhood who’s been caught and convicted.

    The best solution is for parents to talk with their kids and teach them how to stay safe… anywhere, and to protect themselves… from anyone. It sounds like that’s what Platinum’s “edutainment” materials will be helping with, but I question how much of that good information will be drowned out by the well-intended but misguided “let’s solve this with technology” approach of the group they’re working with.

  2. Sadly, like Jason says, sexual abuse happens more often from within a family and their already trusted circle of friends and acquaintances. If somebody wants to make a difference, it should be encouragement in school for kids to speak out against parents, siblings, and relatives who are abusing them. My mother was abused by her brother-in-law when she was thirteen, and she went all through highschool thinking that was normal.

    I hate stuff like this because it gives people a false sense of security, a feeling that if they can just “keep an eye on the neighbor next door” they’ll be okay. So instead of pushing for more programs in schools to increase awareness, parents across the globe breathe a sigh of relief and think that stuff like this is all it takes to address the issue, not realizing that more efforts are needed such as how to prevent certain types of people from actually turning into sexual predators in the first place (it isn’t like they just pop out of Zeus’s head) and treating it like the recurring mental illness it is and sending them off for actual treatment so they never do it again.

    I get kind of worked up over this issue. My uncle was never identified or labeled as a sexual predator by any police system because by the time my mom actually worked up the nerve to report it, over seven years had gone by, and by that time, you can’t bring up charges. He’s wealthy, successful, and considered an “outstanding” citizen in his neighborhood. It makes my stomach churn. People shouldn’t be looking across the street. They should be looking right at home.