Google makes it more difficult to find porn by updating SafeSearch, but…

Today, c|net and the Business Insider covered a story about Google changing it’s SafeSearch. It’s now a simple ON/OFF switch for “Filtering explicit results”. This demonstrates that the market conditions are changing

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in favour of making it easier to control access to explicit material specifically, over and above other types of content. It also demonstrates that MetaCert is on the right track in helping companies to improve “how” they improve their existing family safety controls, or implement new ones, specifically for controlling access to explicit content.

Google SafeSearch is great for young kids but…

Although Google’s methodology is good for protecting young children from explicit content, it could be further improved by adopting MetaCert’s data feed. With Google SafeSearch enabeled, a search for “porn” blocks everything. That is, zero search results are returned. Using any one of MetaCert’s applications that demonstrate the use of our data, returns search results, excluding only the sites that actually contain pornography. Crude family safety blocking is ok for young kids, but improvements are needed for wiser teenagers and adults who would like to exclude sites that contain explicit content and not sites that talk about it.

Ironically, as you can see from the second screen shot, even c|net and the Business Insider are filtered out. You could argue that you shouldn’t search for “porn”. But it does demonstrates my point in over blocking on a vast scale that isn’t so obvious to the customer.

Below is a screen shot taken when using our iPad browser, Olly. As you can see, the same search has very different results. Companies that use MetaCert’s DNS or API as described by the Guardian this week, would

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also see much more accurate search results for their customers – without over blocking.

Thanks to Google, other companies that provide Internet access might see how helping customers control access to pornography should be the number one priority. Controlling access should be an easy-to-use on/off switch like we have on Olly and our browser extensions. More advanced settings can be provided for other categories such as violence, nudity, gambling etc.


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