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Google Blurs Explicit Images, Streamlines Report System

Photo courtesy of
Charles Deluvio
via Unsplash

Google Blurs Explicit Images, Streamlines Report System

By Movieguide® Contributor

Google recently announced that it will blur explicit imagery that appears in search results and streamline its image-reporting process.

“Earlier this year, we announced a new safeguard that helps protect you and your family from inadvertently encountering explicit imagery on Search,” Google wrote. “With this update, explicit imagery — such as adult or graphic violent content — will now be blurred by default when it appears in Search results.”

“The new SafeSearch blurring setting is rolling out for all users globally this month. You can adjust your settings and turn it off at any time, unless a guardian or school network administrator has locked the setting,” the statement continued.

This change marks a significant step in protecting teens and children from pornography.

As Movieguide® reported:

Most teens (73%) have consumed pornography, only 44% had ever done so “on purpose,” while 58% had encountered pornography accidentally.

How do so many teens accidentally come across pornographic material? Of the 58% who reported accidentally encountering pornography, 51% said they encountered it “via clicking a link, search engine result, an online ad, or on social media in some way.”

“Google announced that sexually explicit or violent images will be blurred by default in search results, even when SafeSearch isn’t turned on,” The National Center of Sexual Exploitation shared on Instagram.

“Google announced that explicit images will be blurred by default,” the post continued. “This decision is a tremendous step forward in keeping children safe online. It also protects survivors of image-based sexual abuse whose exploitation could turn up in a Google Search. Well done, Google!”

“Google has overwhelming market share, with roughly 93% of global Internet searches being conducted on Google. As Google Images accounts for 62.6% of all Google searches (over 5.3 billion searches per day!), it’s clear that the number of people protected by this change is truly enormous,” NCOSE reported.

Google has also updated its “reporting process for non-consensually created or shared explicit images.”

“Reports for IBSA [image-based sexual abuse] are now filed through a single form that guides survivors through the process, rather than forcing survivors to navigate multiple forms with confusing (and at times contradictory) language. Survivors can now report up to 1,000 URLs in the same form,” NCOSE added.

Movieguide® previously reported on Google’s efforts to remove sexually explicit images:

The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) reports they’ve successfully worked with Google Images to remove pornographic images when anatomical terms are searched on GooglePlay.

The NCOSE began working with Google last year after an email they received about a young boy researching the term “slavery” for a school project.

After using the word “bondage” in the search bar, he saw “countless sexually violent images and links of sexual torture,” according to the release.

During the NCSE’s most recent meeting with Google, executives informed them the problem is virtually solved.

Now, when anatomical terms are searched on Google Images, the site will populate educational drawings instead of real-life photos. Even now when a person searches a pornographic term, the number of hardcore pornography images is drastically reduced.

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Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

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4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.