YouTube Kids gets new parental-control features

26 April, 2018, 12:40 | Author: Grady King
  • YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki

India tops the list of users flagging as many as 9.3 million unique videos on video streaming platform, YouTube during the October-December 2017 period for inappropriate content. The updated tools arrive after a controversy dubbed 'Elsagate' emerged late previous year, during which a slew of inappropriate videos were discovered to be targeting children, leading to a purge of channels amid outcry by advertisers and a pledge on YouTube's part to do better.

YouTube now uses algorithms to decide which videos can appear on YouTube Kids.

This means your parents will be able to make sure that you can only see videos that Youtube staff have decided are appropriate for children. Rumours of a hand-curated YouTube Kids app surfaced earlier this month, and now Google and YouTube have announced more controls for parents to restrict what videos and channels their kids are watching, including limiting them to hand-curated content.

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Even as YouTube takes stronger measures to enhance its YouTube Kids app, the service itself continues to come under fire for endangering minors.

In a third new option, the YouTube Kids team and its partners will offer collections of trusted channels on subjects such as arts and crafts, music and sport, starting this week.

"By the end of the year, we plan to refine our reporting systems and add additional data, including data on comments, the speed of removal, and policy removal reasons." . The ability to turn search off already exists in the YouTube Kids app, but this future update will ensure that only verified channels and videos appear as kids watch videos on the platform. A human doesn't check the videos before they're added, but parents can flag videos they find alarming later and a content reviewer will check it out.

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A non-algorithmic, white-listed version of the Kids app has been something that parents have been calling for. This feature will be going live later this year, so watch out for this one. "It's been shown time and time again", says Bolin "that inappropriate content is recommended to kids because those videos aren't reviewed by an actual human being".

It's the kind of control parents have been asking for from the popular app, but it also puts the onus on them to filter content.

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