According to inside sources from YouTube, the website is rumored to work on a child-friendly version which will allow parents to let their children watch videos without constantly supervising them. The Information stated that the new channel aims specifically at children under ten years old and, although a launch date may not be in sight yet, the Google-owned website is said to have talked to video producers. The website already launched its educational version, which aims at helping school children and only contains educational videos.
“Multiple sources” told The Information that YouTube is working on a child-friendly version and, although the website has shown interest in making it “child-proof” with the help of the Safety Mode parental control feature, the rumored site could mean that children will not come across inappropriate videos or comments anymore, thus setting parents’ minds at ease. Leaving children to watch programs made especially for them will allow parents to trust YouTube, irrespective of the type of gadget on which the kids like to play.
Three insiders state that the famous website is preparing a child-friendly version, although no further information has been offered with regard to release date, content or advertisements, but the Google-owned site has already taken action regarding making this platform a safer space for children.
Since approximately two-thirds of children aged between nine and eleven years old have mobiles and iPads, limiting the content has become challenging for parents. As a result, YouTube launched its EDU version, a channel designed for school children full of educational videos and it also has Safety Mode, a parental control feature which may not be 100 percent accurate, but there are age restrictions, community flagging and other signals that can identify inappropriate content.
The feature is enabled on a browser level, so if there are more browsers installed on a computer, parents are advised to enable Safety Mode on all of them. It will also remain on the browser once it is enabled, no matter if it is being used or not, and turning YouTube’s Safety Mode on will automatically turn Google’s SafeSearch on, as well.
Safety Mode is available in all languages and on mobile and the website’s official app.
While the Google-owned website is reportedly aiming at making a child-friendly channel and entering the “community” of programs for children like Sesame Street or Disney Channel, the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) already expressed its desire to regulate not only feature films, but also online video content, which also includes music videos.
David Austin, BBFC’s assistant director stated in January that the organization has joined forces with British Recorded Music and Google in order to analyze how classification of online videos could be put into practice.
Not much is known about YouTube’s plans of creating a child-friendly version, because the sources did not offer information with regard to the release date or content, but the reports suggest that it would be accessible through a locked channel or separate app. However, one of the questions that has remained unanswered is whether the site would contain advertising or not. Regardless of the scarce information, it has been rumored that YouTube is going to work on a child-friendly version which allows parents to control the type of video children see.
By Gabriela Motroc