Raters now have access to a new “Upsetting-Offensive” flag which Google says should be used in the following instances:
- Content that promotes hate or violence against a group of people based on criteria including (but not limited to) race or ethnicity, religion, gender, nationality or citizenship, disability, age, sexual orientation, or veteran status.
- Content with racial slurs or extremely offensive terminology.
- Graphic violence, including animal cruelty or child abuse.
- Explicit how to information about harmful activities (e.g., how tos on human trafficking or violent assault).
- Other types of content which users in your locale would find extremely upsetting or offensive.
And there is more:
Just being upsetting isn’t enough for raters to flag search results. Google points to an example regarding a “Holocaust history” search: one result is a Holocaust denial site, which the company says deserves the flag. The other, a website from The History Channel, might be upsetting due to subject matter but is a “factually accurate source of historical information” and doesn’t promote the hateful content mentioned above.
Forgive me for being insensitive or potentially offensive, but I miss the wild west of the net.. when things were free and fierce, uncensored and raw..
The content police may take things too far.