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YouTube fixes Restricted Mode issue censoring LGBTQ+ videos

That certainly took a while.
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YouTube says it has fixed the issue that made Restricted Mode a bit too restrictive. The option was supposed to make the website more suitable for minors when switched on, but its older version also filtered out millions of harmless videos, including hundreds of thousands featuring LGBTQ+ themes. It affected Canadian indie pop duo Tegan & Sara's music videos, a recording of someone coming out to his grandmother and a lesbian couple's wedding vows, among numerous other perfectly wholesome content. People rightly called out YouTube, which apologized for what it said was a mistake its system made.

While YouTube doesn't delve into the details of what it had to fix, it assures everyone it has already corrected whatever it was that was "incorrectly filtering videos for [the] feature." The team also manually reviewed a bunch of censored videos and will use them to train its algorithms. It took a while for the platform to address the problem, but as a result, Restricted Mode now has access to 12 million additional videos.

Despite its promise to roll out more changes in the future, YouTube admits that the system will "never be 100 percent perfect." Some G-rated videos will likely still get caught in its sticky filters, but at least you can now contact the team when it happens through a new form built for that specific purpose. If you're wondering what should and shouldn't be able to go through Restricted Mode's filter, check out these guidelines the platform listed:

  • Drugs and alcohol: If you're talking about drug use or abuse, or if you're drinking alcohol in your videos, your videos will likely not be available in Restricted Mode.
  • Sex: While some educational, straightforward conversations about sexual education may be included in Restricted Mode, overly detailed conversations about sex or sexual activity will likely be removed. This is one of the more difficult topics to train our systems on, and context is key. If your music video features adult themes like sex or drug use, that video will likely not make it into Restricted Mode.
  • Violence: If your video includes graphic descriptions of violence, violent acts, natural disasters and tragedies, or even violence in the news, it will likely not appear in Restricted Mode.
  • Mature subjects: Videos that cover specific details about events related to terrorism, war, crime, and political conflicts that resulted in death or serious injury may not be available on Restricted Mode, even if no graphic imagery is shown.
  • Profane and mature language: Inappropriate language including profanity like "F bombs" will also likely result in your video not being available in Restricted Mode.

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