Then these weird videos started showing up. We took youtube away for exactly these videos that are mentioned in this link.
These are targeting children and it's sick.
It's entirely possible the videos made this happen, or at least helped, but some kids just develop that stuff crazy-early. My daughter saw little video content before age two, and very little Youtube, but achieved all the same in the same timeframe with only basic work on our part. It was natural for her—she broke a 200-word working vocabulary by 14 months, could already count sets of things under ten, could name most letters of the alphabet, and so on. By age 2 she sounded like your average 4-year-old. Youtube had nothing to do with it, and we barely had anything to do with it. That was just her.
My son, on the other hand...
I'm from Sweden btw
Many Europeans told me they learned English from watching TV as children.
I replied that sounded like the most inefficient method of teaching ever devised. Not what he wanted to hear :-)
She has no access to YouTube anymore, which is a bit sad because again there's a lot of good stuff there.
Honestly - the image of grown men in thongs and Spider Man masks is disturbing to adults only in a certain context, you could just as well be describing modern wrestlers, whose content is targeted to slightly older children. But how would a toddler be damaged by it?
How would seeing this content actually be harmful to a toddler (1 - ~3 years old?)
I'm not a child psychologist so I may be wrong but I think you need a certain awareness of cultural norms to be disturbed by deviations from those norms, and toddlers might not even recognize what they're looking at, much less know that it's wrong, or why. I suspect these particular videos are more meant to disturb parents than kids.
It also concerns me that exposure to this sort of thing might help them form the impression that the behaviors depicted are within the normal range of interaction.
There is a reason why parent-child interaction is so important in early life. Children imitate adults. They are incredibly impressionable, their brains grow extremely quickly. Yes, you must talk slow and in simple terms to very young children, but they are not just confused idiots who will forget everything they saw when they are older. If you speak with a larger vocabulary, contextually, to a child, they will pick up your vocabulary and they will eventually come to recognize it as having a specific meaning in a specific context.
If a child sees spiderman peeing on elsa, he is either going to be upset and confused, or he is going to take this behavior as normal. This is how socialization works. He is learning from everything he sees.
They’ll use the computing power of a small nation to train their Go-Bot and can instantly identify anything that might belong to Big Content ... but when it comes to basic decency Google throw up their hands.
On the other hand, a user-maintained curated list of channels for children is not something that unthinkable (think of GitHub model, with pull requests and that sort of thing).
Join both things and you get a better alternative to Youtube Kids for concerned parents. I'm even surprised nobody has done something like this, it would be a nice project.
I absolutely believe there's a need for curated content for online video.
I'd love a tv-channel-like browsing experience, with seamless switching (maybe some clever caching behind the scenes).
I find it difficult to believe Google never knew these videos existed, since they appear to be an entire industry based on copyright infringement and gaming their algorithms, one would expect Google to want to kill them with fire. That they are allowed to proliferate can only mean they serve Google's interest for the site - they drive clicks and views.
Whatever other motives there may be for them (personally, I think they're nothing more sinister than monetizing clickbait) I think it's important to remember that Youtube is a business driven by clickbait, and the design of the site reinforces this everywhere it can.
That makes sense of course. In my mind I thought that doing this wouldn't stop them from running advertisements. But I guess it would undermine recruitment of new content creators.
As I understand it, Youtube isn't profitable for Google, and a lot of their decisions wrt their algorithms seem focused on increasingly desperate attempts at wringing some semblance of solvency out of the platform, so I wouldn't expect them to be very willing to work against their interests right now.
I saw how at my local primary school, kids were happily jumping up and down to a song and suddenly there’s a chocolate advert.
Imo the safest way to let kids browse is walled gardens like Netflix Kids. But that would also be unleashing an entire new addiction.
The ideal scenario is parent supervision, but most parents don’t have enough time/patience to sit with their kids everyday. In fact the iPad is meant to be the new babysitter!
It’s quite a problem, this one is.
Besides it is not that hard to download local copies of the videos you want and now you do not even need to be online.
Getting your kid off of youtube is probably a good thing.
Even for slightly older kids, a curated platform is always going to be a safer bet than a moderated platform. It seems fairly easy to find good sources of curated content.
And of course there's just making sure they don't spend too much time consuming media in general. It's hard, but the less they watch the easier it is to be picky about introducing new things.
Maybe our overall perception of quality has changed due to being exposed to crap on the internet, and now new parents believe the stuff on YouTube is fine. And they don't remember the whole world of Sesame Street and alike out there anymore.
For a young kid, the world is a strange and unpredictable place. Which means "scary" in some sense.
Watching a video (that the kid has seen many times before) is actually comforting. The kid can predict what's going to happen next, and is happy when expectations match reality.
There's possibly something similar going on with people on the autistic end of the spectrum, which may explain why they tend to get upset when taken out of their routine.
So my pet theory is that actually the opposite of the above theory is true. Kids rewatch movies that push the boundaries of their reality, in order to gain a better understanding of them. When the novelty wears off they'll move on.
Probably the truth is some combination of both. I wouldn't be surprised if certain times of day, developmental needs kick in and kids want to rewatch movies they don't understand; while other times of day, comfort needs kick in and they just want to see Elsa sing for the 100th time.
I remember re-reading / looking at things more often than I would do today. That is, a few books I liked a lot. Other than that, new and wild was always appreciated, just not so wild to be scary. But still, protection from overstimulation (and danger) is a really important job of parents, especially for infants, predictability to a degree is important. Vital, even. Too much lack of it puts the baby into survival mode so to speak. This is cobbled together from armchair psychology but I'll just say it anyway, I think a roaring sea of non-sequitur events is just about the worst that could happen to a developing brain, it will have to develop shells instead of being able blossom and keep the ability to be sensitive (while developing the ability to, when needed, protect one's own attention oneself). So I agree, it's probably a combination of both. New input, come to terms with it, integrate it, get comfortable, get hungry, get new input :)
When I'm trying to fall asleep, I will almost always put on an episode of a podcast I've heard 500 times. It's more soothing than one of those ambient-noise apps.
But watch a YouTube video of a magic trick, and you'll likely click back and re-watch the critical moment a few times before you've even realized what you're doing. Even if you don't end up understanding what happens, your brain inherently wants to make sure you are entirely clear on what you saw, so it can learn the raw fact that "this is a thing that can happen" and then attempt to reconstruct your mental models and schemas to take that evidence into account.
Kids just need to do that for, well, everything.
That alone explains pop music success.
> Young children love repetition, whether it's watching a video or listening to song lyrics, because it's the best way for them to acquire and master new skills. In order to learn something well, children this age practice it until they get it right, hence the repeated watching.
Oral tradition must provide some survival benefits to be supported by instinct and genetics. My guess is today people only talk about oral history WRT obscure history or religion whereas when it was current technology, oral history was probably used mostly to store hunting and gathering data.
There was a line at the end of some Muppets movie I would watch over and over, as the credits rolled—some nudge to parents like “I bet you wish you were watching this for the first time!”
This is an enjoyable experience for them, it is actually designed to be. This is how you sell tie-ins and make profit, the younger you get them the deeper they're caught in.
The side effect is that it is destroying their attention and impairs their self-development and cognition.
Also the human brain is a sucker for a good story, before screens and videos, kids were addicted to bedtime storytelling and could ask being told the same story a lot of times.
I presume there's something bad about the new videos but it's not obvious for the rest of us.
Although actually, huh. Maybe it's a little more organized and is just a general memetic malware scam; con youtube's algorithms into putting your junk which was generated in 0.4 seconds onto a few million screens and pocket the ad revenue.
The point is, it might not be any more malicious than anything else that advertisers do on a daily basis, if they were just auto-tweaking the videos to optimize for revenue and hey, presto, colorful crap topped the list. After all, it's just an impartial algorithm.
Kinda makes you think about all the other stuff we happily let advertisers get away with, huh?
I think the real issue is that online advertising platforms are allowing this to happen and charging advertisers for it (even though these views/clicks are often not valid – whether they're people who click a fake 'Download' by mistake or kids under 13).
I remember some time ago watching a video discussing weird flash games and videos with the same sort of pain-and-comfort themes that some of these videos have, also including Disney and other licensed characters, and also the oddly repetitious and low quality "children's videos" related to (and possibly spun off of) toys (lacking violent or otherwise disturbing content,) likely just attempts at clickbait. These would pop up in compilations of "weird Youtube channels" from time to time, no doubt driving traffic to their channels, and making them aware of their potential virality.
So it may be impossible to know, at this point, what the reality is behind this content because a lot of it may well be attempts to cash in on a meme.
To be honest I'm not sure what's worse -- that or the child molester angle.
In a world with private key encryption, sending a message on a weird video on youtube via antiquated cyphers seems less plausible than bot generated comments from a lexicon that increase a videos profitability.
If I was to infer a conspiracy, it would be that the some people are putting easily deciphered insidious messages on the videos purely for their own entertainment. The videos themselves are a simple cash grab, some of which are very weird and those are the ones we end up discussing.
This works until they should be old enough to know about strange and stupid content.
My kid was watching an official kids channel inside the YouTube Kids app (I honestly don't remember which, but it was affiliated with a local TV channel). I have the parental control settings configured - and I had to snatch it off him when I saw a red band title card come up in the ad break. Turned out it was for the IT remake.
Couldn't believe it, but lesson learned. This needs serious work.
I signed up for YouTube Red for a free month of no commercials and it was great. I'm wondering if maybe YouTube is doing this to nudge parents into signing up for their premium service to avoids disturbing ads during kid viewing time. $10/month really isn't that bad and I'm considering just having it part my monthly digital fee schedule.
As an English speaker in Denmark, half the adverts I see on YouTube are from the same company, offering English writing review. Others are either luxury cars or in Danish (broadband, holidays). I don't think it would be Denmark's style to have an HIV thing on YouTube.
For those who don't know, it was a TV documentary series that would air everyday between the 1st and 24th of december, and would typically follow a child worker in the 3rd world. Boys working in mines. It was shown during the kids programming on national TV. I distinctly remember the story of a young girl who weaved carpets for a living and was about to loose her job because her boss thought her new born baby took too much of her time - a baby he was the father of!
Our children do not stand a chance.
They do but it requires the parents ban any and all media with advertising.
Imagine grey market viagra emails stomping on human cukture, forever.
Sometimes I use a browser in a context where I have my ad-blocking shields down (someone else's system, a browser after an upgrade briefly trashes my config), and it's disturbing to me that despite being fully armed with HN-grade world-weary cynicism and the fact that I've been online for coming up on 25-ish years now (starting with BBSes before I could get on the Internet proper), that Taboola crap still sometimes takes conscious effort to not click on it, because it's that good. Goodness help me if they were any good at delivering what those articles promised, because what usually saves me is remembering that it's just straight up a lie. To be clear, this is still a sub-second process in my head, but it still disturbs me that they can get even that far.
I have two children, 9 and 6. I find myself wondering how long it's going to be before I can trust them on the Internet at all; is the necessary competence receding at a rate greater than one year per year? Ten years ago I would have confidently said "no", and my primary threat model would have been "don't do stupid things that get you computer viruses". Now it's ads, and this sort of crap.
• No junk mail addressed to anyone under 16 years of age.
• No TV advertisements directed towards, or meant to catch the attention of, anyone under 12 years of age. Additionally, in TV shows aimed at children below 12, there can be:
1. No commercials preceding or following the program, nor any commercial breaks in the program itself.
2. No product placements of any kind.
• People or characters from TV shows aimed at children below 12 are not allowed to do any product endorsements, in any context.
• All the above rules for TV shows also apply to the internet.
• Commercials aimed at anyone under 18 are not allowed to directly instruct the child to buy, or to ask anyone else to buy, the product.
• Commercials aimed at anyone under 18 can not be disguised as anything else; it must be clear that it is a commercial and nothing else. This includes in-app advertisements, which are therefore not allowed.
In the case of Sweden there's a TV license funded broadcaster: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sveriges_Television
I wonder how this is handled when the ad context is implicit. Isn't Spiderman's image, for example, always an implied advertisement for Marvel, his movies, action figures, and whatever cereal box he is appearing on this month.
Cereal is less of an issue in the first place (that's a very US thing, didn't even know it existed till I moved to the US when I was 10), but you just don't find brands associating themselves with characters from movies/tv shows.
The closes you get it Sinterklaas/Zwarte Piet on seasonal items and Santa Claus.
Action figures are something you have to get at a specific toy store. Large "super store" like WalMart/Target/others don't really exist. I can't go buy a couch at Albert Heijn. I don't go buy a TV at Aldi. In the US however going to Walmart for electronics is as normal as going to get groceries.
What? You mustn't have any children. There is cereal of Frozen and Moana here, Paw Patrol sprinkles, k3 stuff (forgot which), there's various franchise stuff in the dairy section, ... That's not even counting the non-food section in supermarkets. Next time you're at albert heijn, take a good look around.
Kellogs' products are on the bottom, only two boxes have child-appealing designs.
There was nothing worth photographing in the dairy section. One product was designed for children (cheese stick thing). A chocolate milkshake had a cartoon logo, but it has probably had that logo since 1950.
You don’t get a TV at Aldi in the US either, and many (most?) Walmart stores don’t sell groceries
I think it's more of a "why did bots and inattentive parents fuck it up for the rest of us."
The main complaint is that Youtube Kids (an explicitly kid-friendly subset of youtube, with its own app and parental controls) is being targeted in this way. I assume "the rest of us" are not generally using this version of youtube.
Think about it: scientific consensus is pretty clear that the content makes no difference there should be no exposure to any kind of screen for kids under 6, then maybe a tiny bit until 10-12.
I see that it is used for the object of a verb, and whoever for the subject of a verb, but I am a bit confused here, because here it is the object of "downvote", but the subject of "doubts", so I am confused.
In the sentence "I will look at whomever Bob greets.", I think I understand why it is "whomever", and in the sentence "Whoever enters the room next, they will encounter a surprise.", I think I understand why it is "whoever" and not "whomever", but in the case of your sentence, I don't know what the rule is.
Could you (or anyone else) please explain it to me?
> Rule 1. The presence of whoever or whomever indicates a dependent clause. Use whoever or whomever to agree with the verb in that dependent clause, regardless of the rest of the sentence.
> Give it to whoever/whomever asks for it first.
> He asks for it first. Therefore, whoever is correct.
This problem is exasperated by the fact that phones/tablets are particularly well-suited to, and popular with, young children. Children like to carry things around.
I have installed a ublock origins on a few dozens of android devices of all kind and it always works like a charm.
Unfortunately though, it does not work globally.
My guess is that is an instance of poor diversity within the team that set the early direction for YouTube. Maybe a team with a higher proportion of parents respresented might have made different decisions.
Most of the programmes on BBC iPlayer now have the option to turn subtitles on. I think a very rare, old, program that does not have it. As the standards state MUST
The standards are clear.
4.1. Full-length scheduled programmes and their associated broadcast subtitles MUST be made available online through iPlayer.
If what you have in mind is to target kids while they have not yet developed their mind to the point of dealing with advertising then this is something they should be exposed to.
I tend to be of the first mindset.
I read it last night after the wife recommended it ... and wow.
The article seems to say "back when I was a kid, my parent entertained me with contentless saccharine trip from sources we trusted (Disney et al) but now contentless saccharine trip is autogenerated (duh duh duh) and who knows what effect that is going to have on 'developing brains'"
And would suspect, contrawise, that if there's a problem, it began at the point when the TV became the primary babysitter for modern children and things escalating to youtube is a step but a less significant step than this.
Edit: OK, the complaint is video moving from simplistic saccharine junk to the same thing with violence. I get that this is the step that disturbs parents lazy/busy enough to consign child rearing to video but controlling enough to think kids will parrot whatever they see. I would still see consigning kid-hood activity to video as where the damage comes. But maybe "that's just me"
I think the problem with the crap the author finds is that – it is nonsensical. These videos addict kids by triggering their innate desire to seek out novel/scary situations and explore them. This instinct exists so kids learn about the real world around them, as quickly as possible. But when kids watch videos with no sense, no logic, and no relation to the real world, their brains learn and reinforce nonsense. It delays their development while reducing their attention for more wholesome – and more boring – exploration of the real world.
Kids' brains are amazingly plastic, they have amazing memories, and they ruminate sometimes for months on novel/strange concepts. Watching, say, Peppa the Pig eat her own father even once can have a profoundly negative effect on a young child.
Absolutely parents should not let YouTube babysit their children. But a child watching, say, Sesame Street, will tell you about how Oscar helped Elmo do such-and-such, or Grover had a bad day and Big Bird comforted him, and they'll apply that to their own life. A child watching Marvel character heads buried in sand will prattle on about random creatures' heads buried in things, and will fail to apply that lesson to anything in their real-life experience.
EDIT: Not to imply e.g. Disney is flawless – remember Dumbo's pink elephants?
Alice in Wonderland is a book set in illogical nonsense. The world is illogical, the characters are illogical, but the story is cohesive. That is what makes Alice in Wonderland so wonderful.
To contrast, what we are talking about are generated associations between familiar things. Instead of Alice in Wonderland's illogical nouns and cohesive story, we have familiar nouns and illogical story.
Alice in Wonderland took us on an unfamiliar trip, and made its strange self relatable. These videos are the reverse: they take relatable things, and shove them together in incohesive, unrelatable, and sometimes frightening ways.
I haven't read the book, but given that it's based much more on wordplay as a means of humor (and therefore the exploration of what is, and isn't, sensical in the real world -- the core of humor) than on... algorithmic garbage..., and that it's intended for 8-13 year olds (the ages of its first audience) rather than 2-6 year olds (the target audience of nursery rhymes etc. that the videos in the article are based on), it's somewhat tangential to the point that I and the article are trying to make.
It seem illogical that a sense stream of images would innately dangerous by itself. Indeed, most of the things that a child sees at a young age are senseless to the child even if they have a logic to them. Moroever, a child is going observe a senseless stream of images whenever an adult begins channel surfing in a determined manner.
That analogy is flawed. Children don't learn to speak by listening to each other babble. They learn by listening to adults speak in cohesive, logical sentences.
> It seem illogical that a sense stream of images would innately dangerous by itself.
If it causes the child to ruminate on a nonsensical topic, it is. Children have very limited time to learn about social norms and human behavior.
> Moroever, a child is going observe a senseless stream of images whenever an adult begins channel surfing in a determined manner.
You seem to misunderstand the amount of time children spend watching adults change television channels, versus say, literally anything else that occurs in their life.
Human sociality needs to be boostrapped. Kids watching this all-day-every-day are /definitely/ gonna grow up funny. Why do you think daycare costs more than a mortage?
If kids TV in the US is genuinely no better than the pap on YouTube, then you guys need to picket the FCC until something radical happens.
My bigger concern is that we are happy to let automation take jobs while talking about UBI as the solution. Does no one but me see a connection here? This is a way for people to make money using automation in the face of fewer regular jobs being available due to automation. If people need money and can't make it some other way, duh, they turn to doing this stuff.
In another skit, a girl want to play with all of the other kids. She tries to take away one child's toy, but he gets angry, and pushes her to the ground. She runs away, and finds her magic wand. The magic wand turns a red toy into an evil red ghost. The kids shoot at with guns until it pops. The magic wand creates a green ghost. The kids shoot it. Wand creates a pink ghost. The kids shoot it. Wand creates a yellow ghost. The kids shoot it. The girl runs away.
There's also no continuity or story between the skits. In one skit, the Joker sneaks into someone's house and kidnaps them. In another, he's a good guy, changing all of the watermelon into rainbow watermelon.
TL;DR: Shell out for PBS. Don't let your children watch this.
You know how machine translation is often hilarious when it produces word combinations that wouldn't even _occur_ to a normal humanmind? We think it's funny because we're _aware_ of the difference between normal word sequences and word salad. Small children are not aware of the ways in which these algorithmically-generated videos are, well, weird. Who knows how children's minds react to these supernormal stimuli?
It seems unlikely.
Autogeneration is done for quality but for quantity. Humans have been crafting "high" and "low" brow content for a while and while I might call low brow content trash, I recognize very specific talents and strategies go into things like horrible jingles, it seems unlikely the marketeer could make something with more of qualities they're after just by accident.
When I was young, quite a long time ago, guns and military toys were huge - obviously that implied violence and it all went into my brain.
I would expect that the extreme flexibility of a child's brain would tend to allow them to select between the huge variety of things they're exposed to. And thus I'd suspect the worst part of modern child rearing is the things children aren't allowed to do, such as play outside in the part by themselves (insert horror stories here).
It gets weirder when you have the live action stuff with kids' favourite characters murdering and raping each other. Somebody put in actual effort to put some of that stuff together. Other animated pieces are just a bad accident.
It seems kind of circular. Somebody writes an algorithm to try and take advantage of kids' love for popular cartoons. It grabs keywords, phrases, characters, tones, sound clips, etc. It puts them together into a short (or too long) animated video. The YouTube algorithms pick up on some common tropes and then those autofab end up in kids' watching queues, they end up getting enough views because they keep kids numbly watching (not knowing what it is their taking in), other groups start noticing and decide exploit the algorithms in the same way. At least that's how it appears to me...
There’s a very distinct internet marketing subculture, and for some reason it’s always had a lot of cross over with script kiddies and semi technical Wordpress marketers.
The net is vast and infinite and funnels the human id.
Autotegenerated content will never be a clean feed until machine
Or to put it another way, teach your kids to talk with you if they see or experience something icky.
Autogenerating content targeted at kids is "systematic abuse for profit" in the same way that Disney holding focus groups is "abuse". The content is clearly entertaining to kids, or else there would be no economic incentive to create it.
The algorithm occasionally picks up some nasty troll content by accident (hence degrees of separation). It is clearly unintentional as it goes against the financial interests of the channels.
This is a long way from "zomg illuminati bot conspiracy subliminal evil content child abuse".
- Surrealist gibberish videos made with cheap render assets that feature whatever will show up in kids’ content search (thus a predominance of Marvel and Disney characters)
- Gross-out and violent troll videos that imitate the surrealist gibberish videos well enough for the algorithms to think they’re kids’ content
- Live-action content that tends to include borderline child abuse in the name of “funny” content (for example, children vomiting or visibly in pain)
Kids love things that make them slightly uncomfortable. A feeling they get a lot more often than adults. A feeling most adults avoid.
> Adult themes repeat themselves throughout these videos. They're subtle, and require interpretation which makes our analysis vague, but they are too pervasive amongst videos of different channels, countries of origin, and even advertised content that I cannot help but suspect a correlation. :Imagery of fear and life-threatening circumstances. :Medical play, roleplay or real, involving pregnancy and needles. :Ideas of dominance and power, submission. :Magic, wands, spells being used negatively on others. :Acting on an unconscious party, non-consent. :Visual innuendos and gags and even inappropriate touching. :Naughtiness and misbehavior conducted in secret. :Showers and bathroom imagery. :Colored plastic balls! In every video, regardless of content. :Kids eating inordinate amounts of things for no reason.
> I am 20 with no children but am definitely a scared soccer mom at this point. Having first hand experience with being a Kid On Youtube and now being an Adult With Trauma, I think a lot of people aren't thinking about the severity of the effects of these videos on children, and I'm thinking that's probably because a lot of people in this sub are older and didn't get to experience being a kid on youtube w little/no parental supervision.
> Tons of people are saying "well, I saw porn as a kid, and im fine." That isn't the point! The point is /all of this is already kid targeted/. Seeing porn as a kid on my own accord/exploration did nothing bad to me for the most part. Seeing screamers on kids videos, as a kid? Totally fucked me up. Seeing early-stage elsagate-esque videos as a kid? Not so much, but that's only my experience, and the technology to make videos like this wasn't really available yet. The long term effects are serious and traumatizing and there's more to do w the issue than just "well, its BAD PARENTING" (or, alternatively, people saying the kids watching these videos are "just bad kids". also, not all parents care about being bad parents. just throwing that out there.) Youtube provides a direct service of "you want to hurt kids? well, heres your platform." and it's always been like that. even when youtube wasnt that big. people have been reporting kid-targeted screamers for yearssssssssss and nothing gets taken down. and there are people that want to make this content. that is /incredibly scary/ and exploitable, even if these videos are just a case of "AI gone rogue".
> I watched those Elsa, Spider-Man, The Joker and Maleficent videos for over 4 hours and I lost count how many had steady themes of kidnapping there were, normalizing being tied up and injected with REAL SYRINGES. One especially disturbing video showed a live girl no older than 6 being held down against physical discomfort while a blurred out syringe seemingly penetrated her butt while she lay on her stomach. Mind you all of this is taking place while cheery music is being played couple with laughter and the actual live screaming of the child present in many of the videos.
Spend one hour watching skipping around in videos (it's not like you would be able to refrain from skipping anyway, and if you can go one hour you can stomach a lot more than I can, and that's from someone who saw people getting sliced up on stileproject in 2000). Then do some very superficial math. Then see if you just want to shrug it off.
I wouldn't watch it myself so just hearsay.
> What was the disturbing thing?
Sitting a child in front of YouTube is now essentially equivalent to running a fuzzer / AFL on an infant mind. Who the hell knows how the human brain will react?
It makes sense to me that systems which randomly throw things out and react to clicks of kids with not much superego quickly fall into dream-logic. Isn't this roughly the canonical explanation for how dreams work anyway?
I wonder if the result would be different had I started out with different preferences, or if The Algorithm pushes everyone to the same place (cheap music for Spotify)
I was exposed to tons of super-weird stuff on TV an the internet (adult swim, fat-pie, etc) and so were most of my friends growing up. I don't think it was problematic for any of us.
When you're a kid and something feels disturbing, you turn it off. Our society really doesn't give kids any credit for being autonomous and resilient.
Most of all, I don't like that one corporation has the power to "crack down" on a whim about what's appropriate for kids to watch on a global scale.
Agreed, to some extent.
> When you're a kid and something feels disturbing, you turn it off
One of the arguments made in the original Verge article on this from February is that young children don't actually behave this way. In fact, if they did, this wouldn't be an issue, since the videos wouldn't be watched, and the motivation for making them would be gone.
I love mildly disturbing, uncomfortable and awkward entertainment. Salad Fingers and others were some of my favorite things when I was 12 or so. And I don't think there's anything wrong with that at all. But the children this article mentions are much younger than that.
She also saw some odd nursery rhymes on youtube, but those didn't seem to annoy her.
Not all kids are the same, but I agree with the OP that we should maybe give the kids more credit.
My little brother watched "fist of the north star" with me when he was 5, where people literally explode and evil guys routinely lick blood off their blades, and he still grew up to be a balanced person, as far as I can tell.
Your little brother grew up just fine doesn't mean my (hypothetical) kids will grow up fine.
I don't care that the content is violent per se. Whatever. We're robust against that. What I do care about is how the content is inhuman and engagement-optimized. We, as humans, are as defenseless against that sort of thing as the Dodo was to hunters.
Unless I take you wrong, do you claim that a child that watch cartonish spiderman forcing himself on Elsa, will end up child molesters or murderers themselves, then I would love to see some statistics, other that the fact your argument sounds reasonable on its face.
Do you realize these are the "most popular" child videos on YouTube? Gosh, the fact that these people are making money off of it is proof that "kids" are watching these videos, and are apparently not capable of "just turning them off".
Yeah right, maybe that happened to you. I'm not confident my (hypothetical) kid watching these videos can turn them off, at all.
Can you please not claim "censorship", "evil corporation", "global scale", "alarmist", and look at this issue directly? GOSH, these are objectively bad issues, and why can't you just not let children see them? Not everyone out there is trying to "brainwash" your kids. The world is a better place without these videos.
These are bad videos. Children should not be shown these videos. I applaud YouTube for "censoring" these things.
If you're the kind of parent that feels "this is censorship", "no one should tell my kid not to watch these videos", and "my kids are totally okay with watching these videos", then I really think you need some serious help.
I am only hearing the exact same moral panic arguments given about Elvis’s hips.
Just because you don’t like something and can’t understand why someone else would, doesn’t make it bad.
You are just too old to see the value in things your child likes. It’s a tale as old as time.
You’re very insistent these are bad but I don’t really see why. I would consider many of these absurdist works of art, yet we don’t cover children’s eyes from the likes of Pollock.
"5 years old and watching Spiderman rape & murder Elsa" is never something you should let a child watch. I'm sorry, but this is not something Pollock would ever cover. This is child pornography level of stuff. Or, are you saying that is also something perfectly fine for any audience?
I'm really amazed by the mental gymnastics one has to perform to compare these videos to Pollock and Rock and Roll.
Or this: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15674305
Or how about this medium article? https://medium.com/@jamesbridle/something-is-wrong-on-the-in...
Many people have presented their case on this issue. In this thread or elsewhere. Please don't pretend they don't exist by saying "Explain the actual harm. Enumerate it." Where's your proof that these videos are harmless or even beneficial to children?
Common-sensical dismissals of something are often just a way of declingin to address an actual problem. I find it really easy to think of contexts in which kids keep watching this stuff even though they don't like it an its scaring them. You might not have done it, but you might not have any experience of autistic spectrum disorders, for example.
It's like saying people should just ignore trolls on the internet or any of many other nominally helpful cliches that actually dismiss the concerns of people who are dealing with problems.
not only creators of such content should get jailtime, youtube has to pay fines for each child-minute streamed even if it drives alphabet into bankruptcy.
I don’t mean to be accusatory, but I wonder what scale we’re using when we’re saying that this sort of content is “harmful”. I doubt people are implying that watching these videos will turn kids into psychopaths.
A lot of claims, both in the original Medium article and in this thread, are made on the effects disturbing content has on humans.
I am not saying that these videos are something we should allow, but let's get our facts straight on its effects first.
This is the real problem. We need to break the platform monopoly ASAP.
Thats the problem with somebody else filling the homescreen. I never saw it that way.
So what kind of homescreen would be best for a kid?
I remember the show being a wonderful subversive work of art. I also remember it being nightmare fuel when I was as old as 11. If a young child ends up watching a Ren & Stimpy equivalent just because YouTube recommended it, or more likely, watching something just as edgy but without the quality -- that too is a problem.
You were a sheltered, sensitive child.