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ZuiTube provides kid-friendly access to YouTube

In April I wrote about KidZui, a browser designed for kids with the potential to keep them out of the worst areas of the web by providing interesting content that draws them to its more useful and appropriate parts.
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Written by Christopher Dawson, Contributor on

In April I wrote about KidZui, a browser designed for kids with the potential to keep them out of the worst areas of the web by providing interesting content that draws them to its more useful and appropriate parts. I was especially impressed at the time by the sheer volume of kid-friendly content that the browser managed to bring together:

Therein lies the value of KidZui: even if it didn’t have built in monitoring and filtering tools, KidZui aggregates games, learning content, social networking tools (it blocks FaceBook and MySpace, for example, but then suggests Webkinz and Club Penguin). The dashboard (at least that’s what I call the full-screen AOL-style main navigation page) features a rolling list of age-appropriate YouTube videos (I just watched one on raising baby pandas in captivity) without links to “related videos” that are invariably inappropriate.

Now KidZui has expanded on its ability to aggregate and categorize YouTube video suitable for kids and has created ZuiTube. According to a CNN interview with Cliff Boro, chairman and CEO of KidZui,

kids need their own version of YouTube because they're just attracted to the Internet like bees are to honey, but the Internet fundamentally isn't built for kids.

There's so much great content on YouTube for kids, but there's so much horrendous content that's completely inappropriate. So our goal with ZuiTube is to give kids the best of what YouTube has to offer without parents running and screaming because there's just so much bad stuff as well.

Fair enough, right? In fact, ZuiTube really does have a lot to offer. As the CNN article points out, ""Sex," "porn" and "YouTube" are among the top 10 terms searched by kids who use a family filter provided by Symantec." Certainly we've all witnessed the way kids gravitate toward video as a medium and, as they have with KidZui, the company has assembled quite a bit of compelling content.

Mr. Boro notes,

The goal is to be both educational and entertaining. So KidZui has mapped out 8,600 channels of what kids are interested in, ranging from photosynthesis to Miley Cyrus. And we relate all of those categories to each other so kids can independently and safely browse, search and share.

Interestingly, all of the videos are still hosted on YouTube, but kids can create channels and share their favorite videos in the safe social environment of ZuiTube. ZuiTube is free and certainly worth a look, especially when teachers and parents want to provide kids with some independence in searching for video. There is everything from classic Transformers episodes to video on the states of matter, all organized into intuitive and easy to navigate channels, much like their successful KidZui browser.

While much of the video is strictly for entertainment, as Mr. Boro explains,

we don't create any division between learning and being entertained. Oftentimes kids will start with a search in KidZui on something they're interested in like baseball and end up learning or watching videos about sporting events in Rome...

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