How to get rid of Russian content in Google and YouTube: simple instructions
The content we consume strongly influences our thoughts and moods. This is actively used by Russian propaganda to promote its narratives, in particular through Google search and the YouTube video service. That is why media literacy experts advise not only to avoid such content but also to block it.
How to do it? OBOZ.UA has put together a step-by-step guide. By following these steps, you will at least severely limit the access of Russian content to your feed. It is also very desirable to secure children's accounts and gadgets in this way.
Change the language of your Google account
You've probably noticed that even after a query in Ukrainian or English, the search engine may return results in Russian. This may be due to language settings.
- Sign in to any Google service, such as Gmail, or use the Chrome browser if you are logged in to your account with it.
- In the upper right corner of the screen, click on your account icon and select "Manage your Google account".
- In the "Personal information" section, scroll down to "Preferred languages".
- Select Ukrainian as your primary language: this will let the service know that it is popular and in demand, and then use the "Other languages" option. If you see Russian in your list, delete it by clicking the trash can icon.
- Over time, the amount of Russian content in your search results will decrease to almost zero.
- It may take some extra effort on your part as well. Try not to click on Russian-language search results even if they appear in the first line. Over time, the system will realize that you are not interested in such results.
- Also, use the "-ru" command in the search bar. If you add it to your query, Google will automatically filter out all results from the .ru domain zone.
Customize your browser
Search engines and large content platforms also respond to the language settings in the browser you use. That's why it's important to change it to Ukrainian.
- This option can be found in the program's settings menu. Select "Ukrainian" and the browser will switch to it in all its management options and services.
- After that, clear your search history and browser cache. The program will soon adjust to your preferences.
You can't customize the video service in the same way as Google, but YouTube can monitor your behavior and eventually adapt to it. Therefore, it is up to you to determine how often Russian content will be included in your recommendations. You can take the steps listed below.
- Don't watch Russian videos. You will have to deliberately limit yourself to this for some time. Fortunately, the platform will quickly realize that you are not interested in such videos and will stop pushing them.
- Instead, try to watch as much Ukrainian content as possible. For example, ask your friends to recommend interesting channels.
- Remove all Russian channels from your subscriptions. Instead, subscribe to Ukrainian channels.
- When you see Russian content in the recommendations, hover your mouse over the preview of the video and click the three dots to the right below it. This will open the control menu. Select the "Not interested" option, or even better, "Don't recommend videos from this channel." The platform will remember your choice.
- And don't forget to interact with high-quality Ukrainian content: like and comment channels. This way, YouTube will understand that you are interested in what you have watched and will promote this video to other users.