February 23, 2015 6:08 pm
Updated: February 23, 2015 6:26 pm

Google banning explicit sexuality, graphic nudity on Blogger

Google is cracking down on adult content on sites hosted by its Blogger service.

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TORONTO — Google is cracking down on adult content posted to its popular Blogger service.

The company started notifying users on Monday that they have until March 23 to delete “images and video that are sexually explicit or show graphic nudity.”

Google said it will not delete existing blogs that haven’t been purged of explicit content by March 23 but warned it will set them to “private” — meaning only the user and people with whom he/she has directly shared the blog will be able to view it.

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Blogs violating the new content policy that are created after the deadline may be removed, Google cautioned.

“We’ll still allow nudity presented in artistic, educational, documentary, or scientific contexts, or where there are other substantial benefits to the public from not taking action on the content,” reads a message sent to users.

Google blogs have “blogger” or “blogspot” in the URLs.

The company, which has not yet responded to Global News inquiries, has not given a reason for the changes.

Nor has Google said how many users are affected by the new policy, although the figure is believed to be in the millions.

According to its existing content policy for Blogger, Google states that adult content is allowed, “including images or videos that contain nudity or sexual activity,” and that “censoring this content is contrary to a service that bases itself on freedom of expression.”

Blogger sites with adult content are currently required to have a warning that reads: “The blog that you are about to view may contain content only suitable for adults.”

Currently, Blogger sites with adult content must have this warning message.

Blogger currently does not allow photos or videos that depict or encourage “rape, incest, bestiality or necrophilia” as well as any content that exploits children. It also bans inclusion of advertisements for commercial porn sites.

Blogging service WordPress allows blogs with adult content as long as they are “marked as Mature in our system” but it warns against posting “sexual materials that can be considered pornographic, such as images or video of explicit sexual acts or close-up images of genitalia.”

Popular free blogging service Tumblr currently does not prohibit photos and videos containing nudity and sexual activity.

“We have no problem with that kind of stuff. Go nuts. Show nuts. Whatever,” reads the adult content policy.

Tumblr’s parent company, Yahoo!, boasts that it hosts more than 221 million blogs.

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