YouTube has released a blog post to update creators on changes to Restricted Mode, and clarify which content is supposed to be blocked by the feature.
Restricted Mode: What's going on and how we're working to fix it → https://t.co/ciHPcLj71t
— YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) March 21, 2017
Restricted Mode was designed as “an optional feature that helps filter out more mature content from view, so that institutions like schools and libraries as well as people who prefer a more limited experience would feel comfortable offering access to YouTube”.
In a blog post released on 21 April, YouTube clarified the system further:
We heard you on Restricted Mode & we're fully committed to making it better.
Here's how we're working on it → https://t.co/KHbQKt5iOS
— YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) April 21, 2017
YouTube explained that it has fixed an issue that was incorrectly filtering videos – including LGBTQ+ content such as Ash Hardell‘s Her Vows, which was unavailable in Restricted Mode. There are now over 12 million videos available within the filter that had previously been unavailable.
Following discussions with creators and third-party organisations, YouTube is also now providing a form to allow viewers to give them feedback.
YouTube also stated it will be more transparent with what the Restricted Mode feature actually means, with the guidelines for what will be blocked by Restricted Mode as follows:
Discussion and depiction of mature topics:
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.
YouTube hopes to continue making their systems more accurate and make the Restricted Mode experience better.
This latest update has had a mixed response from the community:
According to this, only cookie cutter happy sap YouTubers will make it through in restricted mode. Nothing interesting in any way allowed. https://t.co/h2pFjDMvj1
— YouTube/Clisare (@Clisare) April 21, 2017
— Malene Simonsen (@Malene_Simonsen) April 21, 2017
Find out more about the initial backlash after Restricted Mode blocked LGBTQ+ content. Alternatively, read our recap of Hannah Witton’s sold-out Doing It Live show.