Report: Apple Blocks 'Asian,' 'Teen' Searches Over Porn Fears

Report: Apple Blocks 'Asian,' 'Teen' Searches Over Porn Fears

LOS ANGELES — Apple is now blocking searches on innocuous terms including “Asian” and “teen,” apparently in the belief that only those seeking pornography would search these keywords.

The news was initially reported by tech blog Fossbytes.com.

It is the latest move by consumers’ corporate masters to limit the dissemination of information that they, or their antiporn antagonists, argue is against the moral fabric of a decent society.

While over-blocking questionable search terms may be inevitable given the extreme diversity of adult content available online, Apple’s broad brush may be seen as a sign of “porn culture” infecting its boardroom, where erring on the side of caution results in unforeseen consequences — including preventing the preparation of “Asian cuisine” for a special dinner — due to the lack of recipes showing up in a web search.

XBIZ tested various search terms on an iPhone XS Max running the current version of iOS, 13.3.1, with the “Limit Adult Websites” content blocking feature activated; upon typing various words into the Safari browser’s address bar, we received the following alert: “You cannot browse this page at ‘google.com’ because it is restricted.”

Those terms included “Asian Teens,” “Asian” and “teen,” along with “sex” and “sex education” — all of which are blocked from displaying search results; while searches for “sexual health” returned results of an academic and medical nature and a search for “sexual wellness” placed drugstore giant Walgreens in the first organic slot, followed by Walmart ranking No. 2 for that phrase — with both mainstream retailers linking to herbal supplements and sex toys through their Google listings.

While it is understandable that terms such as “free porn” and “MILF sex” are blocked when the adult content filter is activated, banning searches for anything “Asian” is troubling from a cultural sensitivity viewpoint and confusing given the fact that “Asians” (with an 's') is an acceptable search term — unless your search phrase is “Teen Asians,” of course.

The content blocker states the following: “Limit access to many adult websites automatically. Specific allowed and restricted websites can be added below.”

But adding popular porn portals such as Pornhub and xHamster to the blocker’s white list and then searching a common adult term such as “MILF” resulted in another alert: “Safari cannot open the page. The error was: ‘The URL was blocked by a content filter.’”

Clearly, there’s a lot of room for improvement in this iteration of content blocking technology, as Pornhub and xHamster were explicitly white-listed.

iPhone users can run their own search tests by tapping Settings > Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions > Content Restrictions > Web Content > Limit Adult Websites.

Click here for the Fossbytes report.

Related:  

Copyright © 2024 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

ChickPass Launches Affiliate Program 'ChickPass Cash'

ChickPass has debuted its new ChickPass Cash affiliate program, in partnership with Too Much Media.

Elevated X Adds BlueCheck AVS Support to Web Management Software

Elevated X has added support for BlueCheck.me for age verification services (AVS) to its website management software.

Texas Pastor Who Declared 'Spiritual War' Against Porn Resigns Over Molestation Allegation

Texas evangelical pastor Robert Morris, who in 2022 had vowed to wage “spiritual war” against material he considered pornographic, resigned this week to the post of senior pastor at the megachurch he had founded after the church’s board of elders reviewed allegations that he had molested a parishioner starting in 1982, when she was 12.

AEBN Publishes Popular Searches by Country for April, May

AEBN has released the popular searches from its straight and gay theaters in more than three dozen countries during April and May.

KOSA Sponsors Praise Surgeon General's Endorsement of Mental Health Labeling for Websites

The main sponsors of the controversial Kids Online Safety Act (KOSA) bill this week urged fellow lawmakers to fast-track the bill, after the surgeon general called on Congress to mandate “mental health warnings” on social media platforms.

Utherverse to Launch Functional NFTs in Virtual 'Big Reveal' Event

Utherverse will officially debut its functional non-fungible tokens (fNFTs) with a virtual party within its metaverse on Thursday.

AdultPrime Debuts AI Image Generator

AdultPrime.com has introduced a new AI image-generation feature for its members.

2025 XBIZ Show Set for Jan. 13-16

XBIZ is pleased to announce that the 2025 edition of its flagship conference, the XBIZ Show, will take place Jan. 13-16 at the Kimpton Everly Hotel in Hollywood.

X's Porn-Recognition AI Survives Illinois' Biometric Privacy Law Challenge

A lawsuit filed under Illinois’ unusual state law regulating biometric data collection has taken aim at an AI program used by X since 2015 to identify nudity and NSFW images.

Byborg's Le Shaw Research Institute Teams Up With Cupcake Girls

LiveJasmin parent company Byborg Enterprises’ Le Shaw International Sexual Health and Wellness Research Institute has joined forces with U.S.-based sex worker advocacy group The Cupcake Girls.

Show More