New “kid safe” search engine blocks children’s searches seeking help on reporting sexual abuse, calls rape a “bad word”
Censorship of sexuality, especially while simultaneously violence, particularly sexual violence, is left uncensored, and the harmful implication this juxtaposition has on our collective sexual wellness, is something I’ve written a lot about, like here and here. Hell, I’ve even written a book about it.
So when I found out there is a new “kid safe” search engine called Kiddle designed to block adult search returns for children, I feared it had sex-is-bad-and-violence-is-normal disaster written all over it. When I learned the results are handpicked by humans and not a computer broadly banning based on keywords, I was extra curious to see if I was still right. I was.
I typed in a bunch of different searches that a child might reasonably want or *need* to anonymously ask the Internet. Well, I’ll let you see the results for yourself:
My girlfriend hits me” is also a bad word.
Inquiries about vaginal discharge are, you guessed it, also bad words.
Related bad words: menstrual care, menstrual pads, menstruation, and uterus.
When avoiding a gay dating website in the search results is considered a higher priority of “safety” for children than their homelessness, and you recommend confronting their abusive parents, we have a tish bit of a problem.
If I was 12, typed this into a search engine, and instead of results got a “bad word” finger wagging, I would take the answer to the “is it ok to be bisexual” question as a big fat NO it’s not OK :(
But the human censors apparently allows kids to search for this one under their “kid safe” censorship policies.
So questions about puberty, health, identity, and seeking help for sexual abuse is not “safe”, but kids buying guns is. I feel like a broken record, so I’m going to let you all unpack it this time. Discuss:
why would a child need to know about oral sex?? it’s obvious most of these words can lead to some pretty heavy adult stuff and, emphasis on CHILD. like this isn’t even made for teenagers, it’s for kids. babbies. what kind of fucked up world are you living in where children under the age of eleven have romantic relationships and search google for information on their vagina?? are y’all mad???
Mad? I’d go so far as “furious”. Because they don’t necessarily have romantic relationships, but they sure as hell sometimes have abusive relationships. Why would a child need to know about oral sex? So they know it’s not “a special way daughters kiss their daddies to say they love them”.
And a fair number of people with vaginas start bleeding out of them before they turn 11. And want to know why. And aren’t getting told by the people who think they need to have a “safe” search engine.
Purity culture 101.