If you want to get a good idea of how your kids, especially teens, are interacting on the internet, you might want to check out their comments history on YouTube. In my experience, almost every kid has watched YouTube videos, and anyone with a Gmail account has a YouTube account, since they are both properties of Google.
YouTube is a fantastic resource for free videos, but having access to that content has a real cost – the comments section has some of the worst content on the internet. Vulgar, hateful, racist, homophobic and bullying comments can be found quite frequently.
If you have shared computers in your house, especially with kids around, you probably already use Google’s Safe Search feature, which keeps not-safe-for-kids content out of your search results. Safe Search also controls YouTube video searches, so if you have it turned on, you won’t see any inappropriate videos in your search results. If you haven’t yet turned on Safe Search, it can be found in your general Google Settings.
The problem of exposing family members to inappropriate YouTube comments is a different issue. Even the most innocuous videos can attract the type of comments that would make a sailor blush. Luckily, both Chrome and Firefox have extensions that will block comments from your, or your kids’ view.
For Chrome, the extension is called “No YouTube Comments“. In Firefox, it’s called “Comment Snob”. The Chrome version blocks all comments from being visible; with Firefox users can decide which types of comments they wish to avoid (profanity, all capital letters etc.). Problem solved.
Contact ThirdParent any time for help and resources for monitoring teen internet activity.