YouTube Kids Now Has Parental Controls

You might have given YouTube Kids app a chance in the past, only to be disappointed to find that your child could start out on a Sesame Street video and end up on some inappropriate and disturbing content.

Now it is time to give this app another look. YouTube Kids has just launched parent-approved content, a control that lets you handpick every video and channel available to your child. It is available today on Android and coming soon to iOS.

How to set it up:

  1. Open settings.
  2. Go to the child’s profile.
  3. Select “approved content only.” Then start picking videos and channels for your kids. In this mode, kids are not able to search for content on their own.

While YouTube Kids has mostly been geared for young children, it is also now launching a new “older” feature for 8-12 year olds. This version of the app includes a wider variety of content, like popular music and gaming videos. You can choose the “older” setting when creating a new profile or updating an existing profile. The company has started rolling out the feature in the U.S. and has plans to expand it globally.

Even though YouTube has created improved protections for appropriate content, it is not bulletproof. Parents still need to be engaged and review what their children are viewing. YouTube is providing this new parental control with this disclaimer: “”We work hard to make videos in the app family friendly, but no system is perfect. It’s always possible that a parent may find something they don’t want their child to watch in the “Younger” or “Older” experiences. If this happens, we ask that parents block and flag the video for review by our team. This makes YouTube Kids better for everyone.”

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About the Author

Clayton Cranford
Clayton Cranford is a retired Sergeant from Orange County Sheriff's Department in California and owner of Total Safety Solutions LLC. Clayton is one of the nation’s leading law enforcement educators on social media, child safety, and behavioral threat assessments. Clayton is the author of the definitive book on cyber safety for families, “Parenting in the Digital World.” Clayton has more than 20 years of teaching experience and was awarded the 2015 National Bullying Prevention Award from the School Safety Advocacy Council, and the 2015 American Legion Medal of Merit. Clayton was a member of the County's Behavioral Threat Assessment Team, Crisis Negotiation Team, School Resource Officer program, and Juvenile Bureau.