Parents Cheer YouTube’s Safety Filter

Tuesday, Feb 16, 2010 11:00am

Thanks to a new feature on YouTube, parents will be able to filter out videos with lewd images, profanity or violence, that they have no intention of their kids watching. After all, it’s always on a parent’s mind, consciously or not: What are the kids doing on the PC? Will they accidentally (or intentionally) go where no child should go? Not all parents are able to supervise their kids’ computer use all the time, and there’s a limit to the parental controls one can put in place.
In a straw poll of friends, many talked about words their kids tried to search on Google.
Among the intentional selection were “penus,” “boobys” and “sleeping ladies.”
One could be grateful for misspellings, but other innocent searches, too, invited the young PC users into a world of web filth that gave their parents nightmares for weeks afterwards: “cute 10 year old boy” and “interesting clocks” (misspelt to exclude the ‘l’), for example.
While my kids are nowhere near watching YouTube videos, others with older kids were relieved.
“I’ve found Zachary (not his real name) looking at some strange things sometimes on YouTube so this feature is a godsend,” said a Montclair mom with a precocious ten year old.
“Fantastic,” said another mom with a kid in middle school. “I really hope it works although my instinct tells me not to allow her on YouTube ever!”
Watch the video above, which will show you how to opt in to this safety feature.
And tell us, too, how you censor the unsavory from your web-savvy child, or what sort of alarm bell has rung to make you scramble to do so. Or even a list of funny-at-the-time searches you’ve found on your PC.

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And we can get this project completed in time for Montclair's sesquicentennial when we can stick a fork into historic preservation as a public policy.

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