ONLINE VIDEO VAULT YouTube is digging into its auto-completing search feature following reports of results cropping up that appeared to be linked to child abuse.
Over the weekend, Google received rather disturbing reports that when YouTube users typed “how to have” into the video service’s search bar, some of the suggested results served up were variations of “s*x with your kids”.
“Earlier today our teams were alerted to this profoundly disturbing autocomplete result and we worked to quickly remove it as soon as we were made aware,” said a YouTube spokeswoman to the BBC.
“We are investigating this matter to determine what was behind the appearance of this autocompletion.”
Now, this could be down to something as simple as a rather pathetic individual or group of tosspots spending a lot of time attempting to troll YouTube search algorithms by typing the foul phrase into the search bar repeatedly.
Or it could be a symptom of something a lot more disturbing going on, which Google’s YouTube team will need to tackle as it has already been widely criticised for not doing more to combat sexual predators from targeting young users of YouTube.
The results served up by clicking on the disturbing search suggestions thankfully don’t lead to any abusive videos; hat tip to The Guardian‘s bravery for doing that.
And when we typed in ‘how to have’ into the search bar we were not served up with anything more disturbing than “how to have your first kiss”; as beings of the internet such bodily connections are alien to us.
Nevertheless, the fact that YouTube’s search bar threw up suggestions that involved abuse in the first place is still worrisome, particularly when Google has all manner of smart tech that we’d almost expect to combat such internet nasties without us knowing it.
It’s days like this that we are tempted to unplug ourselves from the online world and settle down with a good book. µ
Source : Inquirer