YouTube alerts only for subscriptions?

All, I am new to Bark so trying to figure everything out… so far I am LOVING the security features. However, I’ve noticed for weeks the only alerts I am receiving is for YouTube subscriptions, which says my child didn’t necessarily view the content but that it was found on a subscription. I haven’t received 1 alert for content my child has actually watched. I’d love to believe that it’s because my kids haven’t came across anything bad, that they are angels and that all the restrictions I have set up works but I find that a little hard to believe :slight_smile: could this mean maybe I didn’t set it up correctly? Anyone else observing this?

Thanks so much for your thoughts!

Hi there, Brittany. Thanks for writing in. :slight_smile: Happy to offer some insight!

YouTube is one of the few platforms that Bark monitors in two ways:

1: Via your child’s connected account.

Bark monitors the videos your child posts, comments made to those videos, and new videos posted to your child’s user and channel subscriptions.

…This means that you’ve provided your child’s YouTube account (login credentials). No matter from where your child’s accesses YouTube, so long as they are using their account, those activities are monitored - even if they use YouTube from another computer, or signed in to a smartTV, or gaming console, that account is monitored for the above activities.
If you’d like to not receive alerts on channels your child is subscribed to, you can ignore alerts from those channels by clicking “ignore” on those alerts, or also (if you’re like me) have your child unsubscribe from 300+ channels. :wink:

2: via your child’s connected device (if applicable)

Bark monitors YouTube views and searches only on connected Android devices and computers with the Bark Chrome extension (including incognito browsing).

This analyzing is not done via your child’s YouTube login credentials. YouTube views and searches are analyzed via the Android installed Bark Kids app, or the Bark Chrome extension on computer browsers. The App and the Extension are what “sees” the views and searches being done on YouTube. These features are only on Androids and computer browsers.

The reason Views and Searches are not able to be done on any other devices besides Androids and computer browsers is because YouTube does not have its API (App programming interface) open to share this data. Bark can get this data anyway via the Android App and browser Extension. iOS devices (for example) do not permit Bark to monitor Views and Searches via the iOS app.

Here’s a detailed list of all that Bark monitors:
https://www.bark.us/what-bark-monitors

You can always look at your parent dashboard at bark.us or your Bark app to see your child’s connected accounts and devices, and you’ll see the last analyzed date. This will help you to see and be assured that their devices (iOS, Android, computer, etc.) are being analyzed and monitored. Even if you are not getting alerts, that may be ok – there may just not be anything of concern to alert you to! :slight_smile:

I hope this helps to further explain what Bark is able to monitor on YouTube depending on which device you are monitoring. Our support team is glad to assist you with any account, connection, alert, or other questions if you’d please write in and connect at bark.us/contact. Thank you!

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Thank you so much for this thorough explanation! So helpful! Follow up question - if I installed the Chrome app on my kids’ iPads and had them watch YouTube only through the Chrome app - would that pick up on monitoring? I have the bark app installed on their devices and also synced their devices to Bark through the PC. Just wondering if this could be a potential workaround since we do have Apple devices. Thanks!

That’s a great question, Brittany! :slight_smile: It is also a sort of complicated answer.

Officially: YouTube is only monitored in the 2 ways listed above previously; some features via the account connection, and some features via the Android YouTube app / Desktop Chrome Bark Extension.

Unofficially: Yes, some YouTube activity can technically be monitored via browsing, also on the iOS Chrome mobile app. It’s not really “YouTube activity”, however it comes across as web browsing activity. I’ve tested it out before on my child’s Bark account and many YouTube (.com) searches and video visits can generate concerning web browsing alerts.

What this means (as plainly as I can explain it) is that if your child were to search for concerning YouTube videos (Let’s just use “sex” as an example here) you’d be alerted as if it were a web search / browsing for YouTube sex. Likewise, regarding YouTube watched videos, it’s not the actual visual streaming video that is analyzed – it is the web page title (not the video content on the screen). Meaning, if there were a sex scene that would not be analyzed visually, however if the video were titled / captioned: “Sex positions” (I’m just making something up as an example) then that should likely send an alert as a concerning web page visited.

Again, YouTube is not officially supported / monitored via mobile browser, but I have personally found that the YouTube website can generate concerning web search / visits alerts. :slight_smile: I hope that makes sense! And it is a smart “work-around” that you thought to ask about, as I have also thought of it myself!

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Wow - so appreciative of your response!! You’ve been a fantastic help! I’ve watched far too many Dateline episodes so I am just trying to monitor my kids digital activity as much as humanly possible - coupled with talking with them, educating them, etc. but it is a sick world out there.

So appreciate your support!!

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