Google has altered the algorithms for its image search, making it more difficult for people to find pornographic sites unless they are specifically searching for them.
“We are not censoring any adult content, and want to show users exactly what they are looking for – but we aim not to show sexually explicit results unless a user is specifically searching for them,” a Google representative told CNET.
“We use algorithms to select the most relevant results for a given query. If you’re looking for adult content, you can find it without having to change the default setting – you just may need to be more explicit in your query if your search terms are potentially ambiguous. The image search settings now work the same way as in Web search.”
The search giant has changed its ‘SafeSearch’ setting, designed to filter violent or sexual images. ‘Filter explicit results’ can now be turned either on or off, though currently the changes only apply in the United States.
Social networks were outraged by the news, with many claiming the action was censorship. The topic was pushed to the front page on Reddit, with comments running into the hundreds.
“You can take away our privacy, but if you mess with porn, the internet is going to be MAD,” said one user, okeman.
“What is this? communism?! BRING BACK THE PORN!” said another.