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A newly-awarded Apple patent addressing parental controls for text-based communication is receiving a considerable amount of attention from the mainstream press today for its ties to the hot-button issue of "sexting", the sending of sexually-explicit messages that is of growing concern to many parents.

Apple's patent, which was filed in January 2008 and first revealed in July 2009 when the application for it was made public, addresses the means by which a filtering system could be used to block messages such as emails and texts containing objectionable material according to user-defined criteria.
The invention, in various embodiments, addresses deficiencies in existing attempts at solutions by providing systems, methods and devices that enable an administrator to control the text-based communications of a user of a text-based communications device through an administrative mode of an intelligent text-based communication control unit or application. The text-based communication control application filters incoming and/or outgoing text-based communications based on administrator-defined criteria.
An entire message identified by the filter could be blocked, or the objectionable content could simply be stripped out while the remainder of the message is allowed to be sent or received.

Apple's focus extends beyond that of simply addressing objectionable content, noting that the feature could be used in an educational enviroment to encourage proper spelling and grammar or usage of certain vocabulary words, or to set quotas for usage of foreign words by a student studying a new language.

Article Link: Apple Awarded 'Anti-Sexting' Patent
 

Orange™

macrumors 6502
Apr 24, 2010
267
0
What does this say about America? That we actually need to monitor text messages in fears of sexting?
 
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knewsom

macrumors 6502a
Jun 9, 2005
949
0
Great, now I'll have to jailbreak my iPhone just to flirt with my wife while she's in meetings...
 
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SeattleMoose

macrumors 68000
Jul 17, 2009
1,960
1,669
Der Wald
Body Part dBase?

Wonder if Apple will use a "Body Part dBase" to identify potentially offensive messages. Or maybe only good looking people will be allowed to "sext".

:p
 
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Caliber26

macrumors 68020
Sep 25, 2009
2,199
2,857
Orlando, FL
This is RETARDED. Do people really think that blocking 'sexting' is going to deter teens (or anyone, for that matter) from having these type of conversations? Please. I was once a teenaged boy. Where there's a will, THERE'S A WAY.
 
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nwcs

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2009
2,209
3,463
Tennessee
It's good that they are providing ways to assist parents. Usually companies out-maneuver and out-spend parents. No doubt it will lead to other ways of getting around it but it is a potentially useful tool for the many parents who actually do care about such things.
 
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andiwm2003

macrumors 601
Mar 29, 2004
4,362
420
Boston, MA
regardless if one likes censoring of texts I do NOT see how this can be a patent.

What is the invention here? Isn't scanning the text for keywords and then blocking it from being sent out a obvious thing?
 
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mickhyperion

macrumors regular
Jul 20, 2004
197
26
Wirelessly posted (iphone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

Double plus ungood
 
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aeaglex07

macrumors 6502
Mar 18, 2007
399
1
United States
if this is forced upon the user, as in non-optional, i will definitely be swticthing to android. Its one thing to censor the app store, its completely fascist to censor my communications.
 
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ImNoSuperMan

macrumors 65816
Dec 1, 2005
1,219
64
What tha?!?!?!?!

This is one apple patent which I really hope apple never implements. This is really a bit tooooooo much.
 
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aristotle

macrumors 68000
Mar 13, 2007
1,768
5
Canada
unless this feature is completely optional, i don't like it.
Obviously you did not read the article.
:rolleyes:
The invention, in various embodiments, addresses deficiencies in existing attempts at solutions by providing systems, methods and devices that enable an administrator to control the text-based communications of a user of a text-based communications device through an administrative mode of an intelligent text-based communication control unit or application. The text-based communication control application filters incoming and/or outgoing text-based communications based on administrator-defined criteria.

Replace "user" with child and administrator with "Parent/parental control". This could be expanded to administration of company supplied iPhones but in that case, I don't see the problem either. The admin could block codenames of products a company is working on for example.
 
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dgree03

macrumors 65816
Jan 8, 2009
1,177
0
What did they invent actually? A filtering system? One of which has existed forever?
 
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WiiDSmoker

macrumors 65816
Sep 15, 2009
1,348
1,890
Dallas, TX
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_0_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8A306 Safari/6531.22.7)

Parents relying upon companies to parent for them win again and aggravate everyone else.
 
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godslabrat

macrumors 6502
Aug 19, 2007
346
110
Given how often my iPhone's spellcheck corrects words that don't need to be corrected, I'm not convinced this is a new concept at Apple.
 
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Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,938
1,273
Washington DC
Great.

So now kids will invent all new slang words that you've never heard of.

BONUS: Now instead of just texting them they can actually talk about sex right in front of you without knowing it! Wonderful! :rolleyes:
 
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nwcs

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2009
2,209
3,463
Tennessee
Ahh, the conspiracy theorists are back. If Apple implements this (and I hope they do) it will undoubtedly be part of parental controls which is where it belongs.
 
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Jonny Skyves

macrumors member
Oct 8, 2010
34
0
M25
Can't do no harm

Great idea. Though I reckon the kids will get around it no probs.
Any parent out there ever tried reading an SMS/Text message from them?!!

Programmers are gonna have fun keeping up with their language I suppose...
 
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miazma

macrumors member
Jan 27, 2010
96
0
I'd rather like to have message reception reports being implemented (as with any other phone). I mean, whats the use of a mechanism to control if I'm using dirty talk in a text message, if there's no mechanism to control if the message was even received by the girl I talk dirty to? :-D
 
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Sky Blue

Guest
Jan 8, 2005
6,856
10
that the feature could be used in an educational enviroment to encourage proper spelling and grammar

Yes! Steve push this out in an update right now.

Arn, please start working on enabling this feature for the forums; make it mandatory.
 
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TomaxXamot

macrumors 6502
Jan 15, 2009
263
252
Vancouver, BC
The kids will just use abbreviations/slang.
But there are so many words that could mean something completely different. Even if they start filtering abbreviations.
"I'm playing with dk!"
"Outgoing message contains banned text"
I meant Donkey Kong!

And doesn't FaceTime make sexting obsolete anyways??
 
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nycdesigner

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2008
30
0
Wirelessly posted (iPhone 4: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

A picture is worth a thousand words.
 
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3583582

Suspended
Jan 6, 2009
163
0
I don't get why people are so negative about this. It's a setting, it's parental control etc, not a standard.

Personally I would love this if I had kids. I don't want to read their SMSs, but I'd love to be notified if they use certain words excessively so that I can have a talk about it with them without breaking their privacy (too much).
 
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antster94

macrumors 6502a
May 2, 2010
545
1
London, UK
wtf?!? too far in the consumer control department. Looks like a bit less fun between me and the girlfriend from that update onwards.
 
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