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YouTube Kids launches new tools to help parents control content

The ‘Parent Approved Content’ feature empowers parents to handpick every video and channel available to their child in the app while an improved ‘Search-off’ control ensures more contained experience.

tech Updated: Apr 26, 2018 13:09 IST
Indo Asian News Service
Indo Asian News Service
Indo Asian News Service
YouTube,YouTube Kids,YouTube Kids app
YouTube is overhauling its kid-focused video app to give parents the option of letting humans, not computer algorithms, select what shows their children can watch.(AP)

In a bid to give parents more control, YouTube Kids on Thursday announced three new features around the content available in the app. The new features include ‘Collections’ that will allow parents to choose only the channel collection and subjects they want their kids to view.

The ‘Parent Approved Content’ feature empowers parents to handpick every video and channel available to their child in the app while an improved ‘Search-off’ control ensures more contained experience.

“When we launched the YouTube Kids app three years ago, our goal was to give kids around the world a place to access videos that were enriching, engaging and allowed them to explore their endless interests,” James Beser, Product Director for YouTube Kids, said in a statement.

“One area of focus for us has been to build new features that give parents even more control around the content available in the YouTube Kids app so they can make the right choice for their unique family and for each child within their family,” he added.

With “Collections,” YouTube Kids team and their partners will offer collections of trusted channels on a variety of subjects from arts and crafts and music to sports, learning and more. This will make it easy for parents to select only the channel collections and topics they want their kids to access.

Parent need to go into “Profile” settings, and select from available collections such as Sesame Workshop and PBS KIDS. “For those parents who want even more control over the videos and channels in the YouTube Kids app, a special feature later this year will roll-out, that will allow parents to specifically handpick every video and channel available to their child in the app,” YouTube Kids said.

Starting this week, turning search off will limit the YouTube Kids experience to channels that have been verified by the YouTube Kids team. YouTube recently said it will hire 10,000 people to monitor and control violent extremism on the popular video streaming platform, along with curbing content that endangers children.

In an interview to The Daily Telegraph, Susan Wojcicki, Chief Executive of the Google-owned video-sharing site, said that “bad actors are exploiting” YouTube to “mislead, manipulate, harass or even harm”. YouTube had also announced it will remove content on the platform that attempts to pass as being “friendly for kids”.

“While some of these videos may be suitable for adults, others are completely unacceptable, so we are working to remove them from YouTube,” Johanna Wright, Vice President of Product Management, YouTube, wrote in a blog post. With over 800 million learning video views per day, YouTube Kids is now live in 37 countries.

First Published: Apr 26, 2018 13:08 IST