"The Elf on the Shelf" is a best-selling children's book that comes with a doll. It tells the story of a "scout elf" who reports back to Santa Claus each night on how a child behaves.

Since it was first published in 2005, "The Elf on the Shelf" has sold more than six million copies and become a Christmas tradition for many families.

According to one Canadian college professor, however, the book prepares children to accept life in a "surveillance state."


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In an article entitled "Who's the Boss?" Dr. Laura Pinto, a digital technology professor at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, argues that "The Elf on the Shelf" teaches kids that it's OK for people to spy on them and that they're not entitled to privacy.

Pinto says that children will think if it's OK for an elf to watch them, then it's OK for the NSA to watch them and report back to the government.

In the article, she also claims that an elf reporting back to Santa each night "sets up children for dangerous, uncritical acceptance of power structures."


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"Remember back in the old days when we would just imagine that Santa was watching us all the time?" Steve Doocy asked on "Fox and Friends" this morning. "But now, we've got the elf on the shelf reporting back to the NSA."

"Actually, I wish the elf on the shelf was real and the NSA was make-believe."

Watch the clip from "Fox and Friends" above and let us know in the comments what you think about Pinto's "surveillance" claims.


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