Google and Android's list of banned words makes for peculiar reading

4 December 2013

android_kit_kat In Google's latest Android OS - KitKat - there's a list of words they don't want you to use. The usual swears are in their, but there's other words that are also banned (not banned wholly - you can change the settings and add any word you like into the dictionary) which make Google look really quite peculiar.

So where to start? Of course, the big swear words and anything homophobic or misogynistic is straight into the censored bin, but also, medical terms for genitalia as well as the rather niche 'gonadatrophia', whatever that is. Typically, there are far more words Android doesn't like pertaining to women's junk compared to men's.

On that note, Android doesn't like the rather innocent "intercourse". It also doesn't like the painfully sweet "lovemaking" or "coitus" either.

The list comes in at just over 1,400 English words, which bafflingly includes "geek" and "preggers". And don't think about typing "braless" or "Tampax" either, because they are also included on Google's Mary Whitehouse list. It also doesn't like the word "condom" either, which seems oddly protestant.

It isn't just biological chat either. Google seem to have a policy on the word "morphine" and "demerol" (yet "methamphetamine" is completely fine). Strangest of all is that some of Google's own products are censored. Try and tap "Chromebook" or "AdMob" in and you'll get no help, whereas "iPhone" is completely fine.

Have Google gone a bit Puritan?


TOPICS:   Mobile   Technology


  • jim
    Censored or just not in the dictionary?
  • Jerry
    thats seems to be just not in the dictonary. And I would assume the reason is to prevent people sending embarrasing messages. Because these days when people type, it's only necessary to get about 70% of the letters correct, and then the auto correct chooses the correct spelled word by itself. And you don't want that it gets it wrong and cooses one of these potty-words.
  • Tim
    Makes sense. It's easy to turn off but by default they don't know who might be using the device. Wouldn't want to accidentally auto-correct to a lot of those words. I have no idea on some of them though!
  • first l.
    "The usual swears are in their" *facepalm*
  • Dosser
    Surely you mean "catholic" not "protestant"?
  • John F.
    This article is nonsense. They're not censored or banned or even words the "Google don't want you to use". They're just words that are not suggested by the dictionary when swiping or by auto-correct, you have to type them out in full. It's to prevent you accidentally sending a message saying "I'm just w*nking for the bus" or "I'm going to get some heroin". They're words that Google don't want to accidentally place in your messages - pretty sensible eh? Lets face it Gimmers would be the first to complain if his/her phone sent a message with an embarrassing auto-correct. And the reason Google's own products are included in the 'banned' list is to stop people like Gimmers complaining about Google "promoting their own products through auto-correct". Lazy, sensationalist, garbage.

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