After a few complaints, the YouTube Kids app will become even more family-friendly in order to both protect the children from inappropriate content and offer parents more control over what their kids view.
- YouTube Kids launched in February, 2015
- In 7 months of activity, it has reached 8 million downloads
- The update will improve on filtering systems, allow parents to turn the Search Bar on or off, and create playlists
- More original shows will be added to the channel
YouTube itself is not precisely the most child-friendly platform on the internet. There are many channels offered specifically to kids, but it’s inevitable that it would mix with videos intended for mature audience. And with internet more accessible than ever, it has fallen into the hand of children.
So, the company has come up with YouTube Kids in order to offer better services to younger minds.
Since its official launch in February, YouTube Kids has seen quite a decent 8 million downloads on Google Play Store and the App Store. While it has always provided excellent quality for children, with family-oriented shows, they have also received some complaints. Users had filed multiple concerns regarding inappropriate content or potential marketing ploys.
Center for Digital Democracy and Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood had cited the app to feature videos that have not been filtered correctly as ‘kid friendly’. The complaints surrounded alcohol, drug abuse, references to sex, child abuse, and pedophilia, as just some of the concerns. It has led to YouTube being prompted to roll out another update.
According to Google CEO, Larry Page, the company will work to make YouTube Kids “as family-friendly as possible”, and that any feedback is taken “very seriously”. The app has, thus, announced several new updates, including content and more control options.
Children can now view videos on their TV through Chromecast, Apple TV, consoles or smart TV. YouTube Kids has also implemented guest-curated playlists, a collection of child-appropriate videos that are created by parents, teachers, celebrities, or verified channels.
National Geographic Kids, Kid President, and Geena Davis are part the selected few who can offer their recommendations.
Along with the update, others, such as Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls and Vsauce will both be joining the list. The company is also announcing that more original shows to appear from well known names like DreamWorksTV, SciShow Kids, and HooplaKidz.
Along with the update, parents will also be enabled to use a special passcode that will allow them to manage how their children watch content. YouTube has also stated that it would soon roll out detailed, clear, and simple instructions on how to better navigate the app. Parents will know exactly how their system works and how to “choose and recommend content”, and, importantly, “how to flag videos”.
Nobody is perfect, and Google is no exception, so there are more hitches to come along the way. However, the company proves itself quick and efficient with their updates to keep their customers pleased and children away from inappropriate content.
Image source: tech.co