Minors use two emoticons to access explicit content on YouTube

Some time ago we talked about blue YouTube and orange YouTube as a code used in TikTok video labels to direct minors to two pornographic websites whose logo matches these two colors. Since then, the popular Google video page has made efforts to make it difficult for minors to access objectionable content and has launched YouTube Kids, an exclusive page where the content that is published must pass much more specific measures. But “the law is made, the trap is made” and now it seems that Two emoticons are enough to access explicit content on YouTube.

Alarms went off on Twitter when a primary school teacher warned about this practice that his own students confessed to him.

In the case that the thread relates, it talks about two emoticons:😳😘. Once we put them in the search area, the first images that are seen are not the most suitable for minors: scenes of sexual content (not explicit but clear), an exaggeration of physical attributes (female and male) and clearly violent videos.

To this we must add that when we open them to the content we also see expressions, images and terms that normalize violent attitudes and practices. Something not at all suitable for minors to watch without supervision and without any explanation.

How is this possible? What we write on the web pages is what we see, but it is not what the system “reads”, much simpler, but in another language. And in this case emoticons are interpreted as punctuation marks and numbers that YouTube does not link to objectionable content.

The good news is that in YouTube Kids, this is not working and the content is still appropriate. The bad news is that it is something that cannot be solved with parental controls. It is also not seen in the history, since in the search we will only see emoticons and we will think that nothing bad is happening.

This presents an important opportunity to talk to our sons and daughters about this topicin a clear and age-appropriate way, whether they have access to a mobile phone or if a friend or someone younger also has it and from their family circle.

There are hundreds of emojis that you can use and the combination and the possibility of “playing” with them will determine the images that we see as results. Thus, the mythical nickname of “digital natives” does not make sense in this case because they do not know how to react… although their curiosity inclines them to advance. This is when dialogue is important.