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YouTube Kids video gives instructions on how to commit suicide

(WAOW)- It’s 2019 and it’s hard to find a child who doesn’t have access to a phone, tablet or other devices.

With kids glued to their cartoons parents think it’s OK to walk away.

However, a particular video that popped up on YouTube Kids suggests otherwise.

YouTube Kids is a more kid friendly version of YouTube.

The YouTube Kids video starts off as an animated video which then takes a drastic turn.

Four minutes into it a man appears to give instructions on how to kill yourself.

News 9 chose not to air the video but we did show it to local therapists.

“Wow that can definitely be an eye opener for parents in regards to monitoring what their children are doing on the internet,” said Stacy Luther of Behavioral Health Clinic.

It’s a sinister message that is cleverly disguised and it’s targeting children.

“This clip was several seconds or minutes into the video which is when parents would normally walk out of the room,” Luther said.

“This is appalling I don’t even know what to say to this I can’t believe someone has been putting this out there,” said Lee Shipway the executive director of Peaceful Solutions.

Shipway has worked with children for more than 30 years.

News 9 showed her another video that was on the site that appears to reference sex trafficking.

“Putting these thoughts in their brains that is is appropriate or this is the way it’s supposed to be it normalizes it for them,” said Shipway. “That would be very bad for children.”

Both therapists emphasize how crucial it is that parents stay with their kids throughout each video they watch.

News 9 reached out to YouTube which is the developer of the YouTube Kids App and they responded with a statement below.

YouTube spokesperson:

We work to ensure the videos in YouTube Kids are family-friendly and take feedback very seriously. We appreciate people drawing problematic content to our attention, and make it possible for anyone to flag a video. Flagged videos are manually reviewed 24/7 and any videos that don’t belong in the app are removed. We’ve also been investing in new controls for parents including the ability to hand pick videos and channels in the app. We are making constant improvements to our systems and recognize there’s more work to do.

Victoria Saha

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