Find age-appropriate content
We all know that the web is vast, which means some content is fine for families, and some is better for adults only. Tools like SafeSearch and YouTube Safety Mode can proactively filter out mature content, while our reporting tools allow you to flag offensive material for removal.
Google has strict policies and community guidelines that explain how our services can be used. If you spot content or behavior on Google services like YouTube, Blogger, Google+ or Google Play that violates our guidelines, our tools make it easy to flag it for review.
For example, developers with apps on Google Play have to rate them according to the Google Play apps rating system. If an app that has been mis-rated or has inappropriate content, you can flag the app for review – we’ll take a look and may remove it if the app violates our policies.
On YouTube, our policy specialists review flagged videos 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If a video violates our community guidelines, it gets removed from the site. If it’s simply not appropriate for everyone, the video may be age-restricted, so younger users aren't able to view it. And when a YouTube partner uploads a video in to our Shows or Movies sections, they’re required to rate any mature content.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Check out some of our other safety features in the sidebar, and learn more about what you can do to keep your family’s online explorations safe and fun for all ages.
Advice from our partners
Young people are naturally curious about sexuality and the internet provides a convenient and private way to get answers to their questions. If kids are finding good and accurate information about sexual health or healthy relationships that’s a positive thing, but if the bulk of their exposure is to pornography, then they may be receiving distorted – or even violent and deviant – messages about relationships and sexual behaviour. It is therefore very important that parents take an active role in their kids’ internet use: monitoring their activities when they are young, and as they get older talking to them about healthy relationships and sexuality, to help them contextualize and make decisions about what they’re seeing online. See more tips on how to manage sexually explicit online content.
Parents today are up against a popular media culture in which violence is often glamourized and the lines are blurred between humour and hate, making it difficult to teach children about respecting others and finding non-violent solutions to conflicts. On the internet young people are exposed to a spectrum of violent content ranging from mature-rated movies and video games, real-life scenes of violence on news sites, to nasty and even racist humour on popular sites. Monitoring children’s internet use is key to protecting them from disturbing content, while older kids need to learn to respect others online and to respond appropriately to violent content when they come upon it. See more tips on how to manage violent and hateful online content.
Unfortunately, vulgar language is fairly common in many internet environments, even on sites that deal with subjects of interest to children and teens (computer games, comics, music, etc.) A few online environments, such as some online games, feature a “swear filter” that automatically blocks out obscene language, though users often find ways to work around these filters. The best filters are those that do not let the user know his or her comment has been filtered, so that they will not seek out a way around the filter. Talk to your kids early about the kind of language they might encounter online. Although you don’t have to be overly specific, being open about what’s out there will remove some of the thrill of encountering or using “forbidden” words. In addition, children should be taught early on that language that may be used in one context may not be appropriate for others.
Some user-created sites on the internet serve to promote harmful or risk-taking behaviors such as self-harm, anorexia/bulimia, drug use and even suicide. These sites serve as communities for people who either engage in or are interested in these behaviors, making them seem more normal. As a result, youth who frequent these sites may begin to engage in the behaviors or, if they already do so, may be pushed to more extreme activities. However, it is extremely rare for youth to make a habit of visiting these sites unless they are already interested in the in the activities in question; therefore, parents must deal with both the online and offline aspects of the behavior. Parents should keep an open dialogue with their children about issues such as body image, suicide and self-harm. They shouldn’t worry that discussing these issues with children will “give them ideas”; in fact, talking about these issues can be a great relief for kids, making them feel less isolated. Parents should always model healthy attitudes towards thing such as food and body image, emotional openness and drug or alcohol use.
In today’s world children are exposed to a multitude of sexual messages through mass media: television, music, Internet, and advertisement. Never before have parents and professionals been more concerned about children’s exposure to this sort of content and the impacts it may have on a child’s healthy sexual development. Research suggests that early exposure to sexually explicit material is likely to have a negative influence on children and therefore it is important to help children develop critical thinking skills using age-appropriate information. Read more about the impacts of viewing explicit materials and what you can do to address this with your child (PDF download).
Discover Google safety features designed to help control what your family sees online.
Report inappropriate SafeSearch results
If you come across a result on SafeSearch that is mature, please report it to us—we’re always working to improve our content filters, and this kind of feedback helps us make SafeSearch safer for everyone.
Flag questionable content
Our policy specialists work around the clock to help keep you and your family safe on YouTube. If you see content or behavior that you think violates the YouTube Community Guidelines, you can flag it for review. If a video violates our guidelines, it gets removed from the site. If it doesn’t violate the Guidelines but might not be appropriate for everyone, the video may be age-restricted, so younger users aren’t able to view it.
Report offensive content
If someone makes an inappropriate comment or post on Google+, you can report it—even from a mobile device. Google+ has clear Content Policies that explain what is and isn't appropriate to do on the site, so if you see content or behavior that violates our policy, you can flag it for review. We review flagged content around the clock, and we may remove content and limit or shut down accounts of users who violate our policies.
Keep Hangouts safe for everyone
We want Hangouts to be fun for everyone. If you see content or behavior that violates the Google+ Content and Conduct Policy, you can flag it for review. These policies play an important part in keeping Google+ a safe and positive place, so we may remove content and limit or shut down accounts of users who violate our policies. You can also block a Hangout user if you no longer want to see or hear them.
Help keep the blogosphere safe for all
There are clear guidelines about what kinds of content can be posted on Blogger. If you see content that violates the Blogger Content Policy, you can flag it for review. Anything that violates our policies will be removed, and we'll place a warning page in front of content that doesn't violate our policies but might not be appropriate for all audiences.
Use Parental controls to filter apps by content rating
You can use Parental controls to restrict the content that can be downloaded or purchased on Google Play. This helps you find appropriate content for you and your family.
Set a filter to keep inappropriate content out
If you’d prefer to not to see mature or age-restricted content as you browse YouTube, scroll to the bottom of any YouTube page and enable Safety Mode. Safety Mode helps filter out potentially objectionable content from search, related videos, playlists, shows, and films.
Set it and forget it. Keep Safety Mode locked
If you want to keep Safety Mode on permanently, you can lock it. Then every time you access YouTube from that browser, you'll automatically be signed in to Safety Mode.
Get family-friendly results from Search
By enabling SafeSearch, you can filter out most of the mature content that you or your family may prefer to avoid. If an inappropriate result does sneak through, you can report it to Google. We're always working to improve our content filters, and this kind of feedback can help us make SafeSearch better for everyone.
Prevent accidental or unwanted purchases
You can help prevent accidental purchases made on Google Play by requiring certain information be entered to make a purchase, like a password.