Tuesday, 21 November 2017
Latest news
Main » What YouTube's Going to Do About Those Disturbing Videos That Target Kids

What YouTube's Going to Do About Those Disturbing Videos That Target Kids

10 November 2017

If a video with recognizable children's characters gets flagged in YouTube's main app, which is much larger than the Kids app, it will be sent to the policy review team.

YouTube will restrict access to videos involving children's characters that are flagged for having content that's inappropriate for kids, the company said in a statement.

YouTube has announced a clampdown on disturbing and inappropriate children's videos, following accusations that the site enabled "infrastructural violence" through the long-run effects of its content recommendation system.

YouTube has touted its YouTube Kids app as a great way for preschoolers to more safely watch videos, supposedly filtered for their appropriateness.

Recent news stories and blog posts highlighted the underbelly of YouTube Kids, Google's children-friendly version of the wide world of YouTube.

Back in 2013, when 4K displays were relatively uncommon, YouTube quietly rolled out the "2160p 4K" option for some videos, allowing users to view select content in higher resolution. No mention of a new policy from YouTube was discussed with Mashable during the reporting of our original piece in October. If the review finds the video is in violation of the new policy, it will be age restrictied, automatically blocking it from showing up in the Kids app. YouTube also has a team of volunteer moderators, which it calls Contributors, looking for inappropriate content.YouTube says it will start training its review team on the new policy and it should be live within a few weeks.

Following revelations that YouTube is serving up to kids thousands of inappropriate and disturbing videos, the company said it will step up its efforts to prevent children from seeing such content.

Age-restricted videos can't be seen by users who aren't logged in, or by those who have entered their age as below 18 on both the site and the app. That means this new policy could put a squeeze on the booming business of crafting odd kid's content.

Many of these videos show millions of views each, though how many are authentic views versus bots is unclear. While it's hard to understand why anyone would make a video about Peppa Pig drinking bleach or a bunch of superheroes and villains participating in a cartoonish yet violent "nursery rhyme", it's been a decent way to make money on YouTube. It says that the fraction of videos on YouTube Kids that were missed by its algorithmic filters and then flagged by users during the last 30 days amounted to just 0.005 percent of videos on the service.

Even though the new policy is geared toward making YouTube Kids a safer place, it does have implications for audiences of the main YouTube site as well.

What YouTube's Going to Do About Those Disturbing Videos That Target Kids