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Why is Google Safe Search such a massive failure at work?

Tony Ramirez

Single guy not by choice with Asperger's Syndrome
I have been using Google safe search for years to filter out adult content yet most adult content still comes through. Many searches lead to profanity especially from sites like Quota, Reddit, Urban Dictionary and Wikipedia. I even tried doing the same searches with Safe Search off and on, yet it leads to the same content and the same search count which means it is not filtering anything.

It's gotten so bad that I had to install a profanity filter for my web browser which only works at filtering text but I still won't do a Google Search without it.
 

Silhouette Mirage

Slimepunk's Not Dead!
V.I.P Member
Most of those aren't there to filter out profanity; most of that is considered SFW by most adults (at least if you're simply viewing swear words on a webpage, nobody is going to really know anyway), depending on the context. The filters are there to stop nudity and sexual content from coming through (and possibly even NSFL content like violence, gore, etc) which would mostly cross the line in the workplace and isn't suitable for non-adults.

If I had a problem with profanity I'd probably have to stop using the internet entirely! This is one of the few websites I've been on where I really have to watch my mouth in public conversation, because I can be a bit of a sailor myself.
 

Judge

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
You have to view such things in their proper perspective on a technological level. Think of anti-virus and malware applications that either don't necessarily detect offending files, or they interpret them as "false-positives". Where built-in heuristics simply don't work as advertised. Massive failure?

Not really. It's where you just have to accept that such technologies have limitations that make them perform nominally more than optimally. So many of such computer algorithms either hit or miss...like it or not. Though in the case of profanity filters, the stakes are considerably lower in comparison.
 
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Tony Ramirez

Single guy not by choice with Asperger's Syndrome
Considering that safe search is optional and is off by default it should do a better job of blocking sites with obvious profanity like Quora and Reddit.
 

Judge

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Considering that safe search is optional and is off by default it should do a better job of blocking sites with obvious profanity like Quora and Reddit.

You're putting too much faith into the technology. It's not that good, and there's not much incentive for them to focus or improve on such features. This is the sort of thing that amounts to the corporate world "throwing a bone" to government just to keep them off their back. Not a serious attempt to pacify those who object to profanity.

Especially when living in a culture so rich with profanity. Though Americans are still behind the Irish in this instance.
 
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