YouTube’s new tool for kid-safe viewing

More than 33 billion online videos were watched during December and about a third of the them were on YouTube, according to comScore’s latest figures. A 2008 study by Nielsen found that YouTube was 2-to-11-year-olds’ No. 1 video viewing site (see this). So parents will probably be happy to know that YouTube now has its own filter for sexually explicit or violent content. “While no filter is 100% perfect, Safety Mode is another step in our ongoing desire to give you greater control over the content you see on the site,” says the YouTube blog. As their video demo shows, it’s easy to activate: Just go to any YouTube page, scroll to the bottom, and click “Safety Mode is off.” After clicking On or Off, you can choose either to “Save” or “Save and lock.” With the former, Safety Mode is on whenever anybody’s uses that browser on that computer until they change that setting (works with a rule that settings don’t get changed and obedient kids). “Save and lock” allows you to log into your Google or YouTube account and lock the setting so that it can’t be changed in that browser by anyone who doesn’t know your password – just as with Google’s SafeSearch lock (see this). [See also “Help with cyberbullying on YouTube.”]

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