Apps and Software Guide
Check Out Google's Bizarre List of Banned Words for Android Users
While Microsoft imposes temporary bans on Xbox One Upload Studio users for swearing, Google takes a more subtle method for users of its Google Keyboard App.
According to Wired, Google has sneakily banned the use of more than 1,400 English words that it deemed inappropriate for Android users. The list of banned words is part of the 165,000-word dictionary found in the source of Android 4.4 KitKat.
Here's some examples of words that you can try typing or swiping, which Google's predictive algorithm will automatically regard as misspellings or not available for auto complete:
As you can see, Google appears to be uncomfortable with words relating to sexuality, reproductive health and undergarments. The list becomes more bizarre when drug names, obscure medical terms and even its own products are included in the list.
Wired - I try to Swype-type the word ‘condom’ and I get ‘condition’ or ‘confusion,’” said Jillian York, a spokesperson for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “There is no context in which that makes any sense. Grow up, Android.”
Wired states that Google declined to share information on how it compiles the list of banned words, and the frequency at which the list is updated. Wired also notes that built-in dictionaries for other languages have fewer words censored.
If you are a regular user of such words (for whatever reason it may be), you can disable the filter in the Google Keyboard settings.