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YouTube Safety Mode: Not So Safe

youtube_safety_not_safeYouTube announced the introduction of its safety mode a couple months ago, but how well does it work? Not very. Try it for yourself. You can activate safety mode by scrolling down to the bottom of the YouTube homepage and clicking “Safety mode: Off” to “On” and hitting “Save.” While it does prevent certain searches from yielding results, it’s not quite comprehensive enough. For example, searching for “sex” comes up with nothing, but search “sex scenes” and you get over 7,000 results.

As YouTube’s PR rep says, “We’re not getting into the business of children’s media. Safety Mode is not meant to create a G-rated experience, and no filter is 100% accurate.” So how is a parent to ensure that their child isn’t seeing something explicitly sexual or violent on YouTube?

I wish I had an answer.

How do you make sure that your kids aren’t seeing inappropriate material on YouTube? Is there anything you can do besides banning the site altogether?

More at Gadgetwise. Photo by courosa.