Reminder To Parents: Online Kid Filters Don't Really Block All That Much

from the your-kids-can-still-see-stuff dept

While we have no issue with parents choosing to use filters for their kids’ computers (we do have an issue when its gov’t mandated, however…), we’ve pointed out in the past that one of the worries with such filters is that parents will over rely on those filters to actually work. Yet, history has shown time and time again that they don’t work very well, and a new study out of Europe once again notes that the filters aren’t very good at blocking “objectionable” content for kids. The filters are basically good only at domain-level blocks, which is fine for some stuff, but there’s all sorts of content on social networks and blogs that might not be appropriate for kids, but that these filters won’t block. The simple fact is that sooner or later kids are going to see stuff they weren’t meant to see. But if you rely too much on the filter, and think that it really will block stuff, you might not think to teach kids that perhaps some stuff online isn’t appropriate for them, and teach them how to deal with it if they run into it by accident.

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Comments on “Reminder To Parents: Online Kid Filters Don't Really Block All That Much”

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Anonymous Coward says:

I would like very much to see what impact this “objectionable material” really have on kids.

I believe that the role of every parent is to show the kids what is wrong and what is right and let them choose their path from there, let them fail and succeed on their own to build their experiences.

All kids have different personalities and some traits may make some more susceptible to failure like highly emotional kids or emotionless ones, how do we recognize what type of kid we have and how to deal with that is time better spend then to try and stop every single bad thing from happening to them.

For me it is better to guide the young and don’t have to worry about bad things because you told them how to deal with it and is their choice now on how to handle such things and if they can’t find a solution to a problem parents should be there to show them how if possible(not even adults know how to deal with some things).

We should ask the older generation to see what they did and what they did not and see how that reflected on the adults they raised to try and understand how things work.

Enrico Suarve says:

Re: Re: Re:

Try this:

No internet in bedrooms
Actually supervise your child?s early play and join in (don’t just rely on a TV or Computer to keep them out of your hair)
If you must, try just giving basic handsets to your child – but really, WTF does a 10 year old even need a phone for anyway?
Go outside once in a while with your kid…
Actually talk to them about love and stuff, give them some context so when they do inevitably find images of some girl sucking multiple cocks they can work out on their own that this is not necessarily ‘loving relationship’ stuff.
Generally try to avoid demonising things like sex to the point that they won’t come to you for answers; as a general rule of thumb if it seriously pisses of the religious right it’s probably in this category.
Try to tech your kids the difference between right and wrong and to show basic respect for others ? stop trolls before they start.

Or were you looking for more generic stuff like breastfeed babies wherever possible and don’t inject drugs in front of them?

PRMan (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

WTF does a 10 year old even need a phone for anyway?

Because she has gymnastics 20 hours a week and is sometimes taken to the gym by other gym moms.

Because when we’re at Disneyland, it’s a great way for them to have some freedom while still being able to reach them in 5 minutes if they need us.

I could go on, but my kids have been very responsible with their phones (as they usually are in every aspect of life) precisely because of some of the things you have said about respecting others and such, which I even managed to teach them as a member of the “hated religious right”.

Rose M. Welch (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

really, WTF does a 10 year old even need a phone for anyway?

To communicate, just like everyone else. I think your characterization of 10-year-olds really shows that you don’t have much experience with children that age. ThetTen-year-olds that I know are fairly responsible.

…images of some girl sucking multiple cocks they can work out on their own that this is not necessarily ‘loving relationship’ stuff.

A sweet love-making scene in a porno is not necessarily ‘loving relationship stuff’, either.

Enrico Suarve says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Funny because the ten year olds I know constantly use them in class and get them confiscated, or when they have them rarely manage an actual two way conversation since their friend is always out of credit/battery or left theirs on the bed/in a bag/on the bus etc.

It has been a few years since my own 15yr old was ten so maybe things have changed but from looking at my friend’s children and their stories I’d say not that much.

“A sweet love-making scene in a porno is not necessarily ‘loving relationship stuff’, either.” Correct – and your point was?

The Mighty Buzzard (profile) says:

If you don’t want your kids to be able to see Internet porn, get them bb guns. They’ll shoot their eyes out and you won’t have to worry about it anymore. Blinding is about the only way you’ll ever get pubescent males to not look at porn if they know of its existence though.

Unless, wait, are your kids dumb? You might be able to keep them from finding porn if they’re really stupid and you stay on top of it their every waking minute. You’re just screwed on wet dreams and wanking without visual aids though.

Blatant Coward (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Well it’s all God’s fault, he invented sex. “Go forth and Multiply.” He forgot to expressly say “After you are married to someone of a different gender in a state and ‘church’ sanctioned ceremony and make sure my spokespeople get their cut of the profits.”
That’s what you get from lazy programming tho.

Shitwizard says:

I’m not too worried about my little brother running into shitting dick nipples. I mean, I don’t want him to, but that’s not what worries me. I mainly don’t want the poor kid to find some of the more horrid things, like the Russian soldier using the serrated edge of a knife to cut off a guy’s head, or the images of guys that were chopped into pieces by the Mexican mafia, or anything else that may have come out of ogrish or rotten from back in the day. It’s depressing to even think of his reaction if he happens upon it.

As soon as I catch him installing limewire or some trash like that, I’ll have to teach him how to properly steal online music and movies too. Just like teenage sex, drinking and drug use, you don’t want him to do it, but you can’t stop him if he decides to do it anyway, so you might as well teach him to do it safely and hope that he keeps his nose clean.

Anonymous was here says:

Reminder to parents

oh ya know whats neat, now that the first gen hackers are now parents just exactly what the real message is should be.

KIDS experiment, kids play , and nothing they can do online can harm a real human being physically, as long as you give them the basics of treating everyone with respect, and not to deface websites…WHO cares what they do ( pron excepted of course as in hey they will fine it so talk to your kids etc. Make sure they know those are real people not just sex objects).

I will add having run a hacker organization for the past 14 years i will say i am hte largest baby sitter on the net.
In the beginning it was like me playing shrink to the worlds troubled kids. Ikept them out of trouble and i helped many go on to do better thigns and hack hte net the way it should be.

There is always more fun to be had learning and trying to do stuff that doesn’t involve hacking your website….
HOWS that game made?
HOW do i make graphics and 3d models?
How is that software made?
CAN i do that?
you get those questions in your head your a good one.

the cyber criminals are often gangsters to begin with and are just leeches of the hacker community trying to get stuff that they should not.

its nice media is now using the proper terms by and large.

Not an electronic Rodent says:


a new study out of Europe once again notes that the filters aren’t very good at blocking “objectionable” content for kids.

Which makes you wonder why politicians seem to love them so much .

Oh yeah,that’s it…… Because they are perfectly aligned with political thinking: A cheap and easy solution that gives the appearance of action without having to actually do something or think too hard.

Christopher (profile) says:

Personally, I go by the thinking that if the kid is interested in and enters words like sex, pornography, etc…. they get what they are looking for!

I don’t bother to put any internet filters on my computer AND I don’t bother putting them on anyone else’s computers. In fact, I tell the parents who I fix computers for that they are a waste of time, because in ten minutes or with a proxy, you can get around these filters.

Bnesaladur (profile) says:

Parents should also realize filters are easy to bypass

While my little bro was in school he was supposed to do internet research into a assigned topic. Of course the filters are set to really strict and he couldn’t look up anything related. I can’t remember what it was but needless to say, it shouldn’t have been blocked. I think it took a day, one day, and we had figured out a simple way to completely bypass the entire system. Sure they don’t do the entire job, but in this case it was easily made to not block anything at all, and that without admin access.

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