Why is Discord's Explicit Media Filter so Bad?

Discord Dec 3, 2022

If you’re a Discord user, you’ve probably noticed the “explicit media” filter that was added recently. And if you’re like most people, you’ve probably found that this filter is ridiculously overprotective and blocks way too much content – including content that is not explicit.

One of the features that Discord offers is an Explicit Media filter, which is supposed to help keep out unwanted NSFW content.

Thumbnail by Roonie
However, this filter is far from perfect, and often ends up censoring content that is not actually explicit.

This can be frustrating for users who are trying to avoid explicit content, but still want to be able to see all the available content.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at why the Discord explicit media filter is so bad, and what you can do to bypass it.

What is a Discord Content Filter?

Discord Explicit Content feature was introduced when Discord's popularity grew and they witnessed a rise in some not-so-good people.The need to strengthen their foundations with security, streamer mode, 2FA and all other things increased.

Discord's explicit content filter filter has proven to be more useful than initially anticipated, especially considering how frequently parents use it to keep tabs on their kids' activities.

You can select the kinds of phrases you wish to block and who to block them from using the explicit content filter in Discord. These privacy options allow you and your child to use Discord without being concerned about inappropriate information, images, or other users.

Recently Discord also released a new feature called AutoMod (which is a moderator bot which blocks mentions,spam and blocked words which you can set). You can check more about AutoMod through this article by Roonie :

Discord AutoMod Update Will Bring Mention Spam Filters
A new AutoMod Setting is coming to Discord and here’s is everything you need to know about it. Out of all the raid types, a mass-mentioning raid has to be one of the most damaging. And with this, you will be able to prevent them before they even happen!

It turns out everybody loves Discord, especially teens like you and me. Discord has turned into this perfect place where you can meet new people, chat with them, and play games together.

What can Discord Explicit Content Filter do?

The tension increases when considering apps like Discord. We can all agree that today's kids are intelligent enough to recognise what's good for them and what's bad for them, but parents can never stop worrying about their kids' safety, especially as they become older. Discord has developed an explicit content filter that does the following things to address this problem:

Block Inappropriate Content

Make the necessary changes to your settings if you do not want to get messages or friend requests from random persons.

  • For unwanted messages

User Settings > Privacy & Safety >  Allow direct messages from other server users.

  • For unwanted friend requests –

User Settings > Privacy & Safety > who can add you as a friend > (deselect) Everyone & Server Members

Discord's Server Privacy Settings

You might not want to see what others send your way, be it strangers or new friends. Discord explicit content filter is all set to automatically detect and delete any images or other content that seems inappropriate. User Settings > Privacy & Safety > Keep Me Safe

Discord's Safe Direct Messaging | Note: I have kept it at the 2nd option because I regularly check my messages.

When you click on any link that has been received from a stranger on Discord, you will be warned that the internet can be spooky.

So where's the Issue?

Now you might be thinking of this as the very perfect feature. But, no . This feature still has many flaws. There's been multiple instances of Discord's self proclaiming "accurate" robots to be falsely identifying normal pictures as explicit and prevents it from being sent to the user on the other end.

A Reddit user ( u/makncheez7361 ) tried to send a picture in his group. Now, the picture wasn't explicit or NSFW. It was just a normal picture of a horse drawn,but the filter blocked it saying it was explicit content.

You gotta be kidding me… from discordapp

Discord uses an AI tool to determine this. False positives do happen so that will most likely be why it happened.

When someone uploads (I don't think it works with links, but I'm not sure) "explicit content" and it recognises it, it will not allow the message to be sent. It uses some kind of automated process, similar to the "safety filter" of Google Image Search to determine if something is "explicit".

Basically, if you have a SFW server where your moderators and admins are to delete such content, feel free to enable it as additional measure. If you are not, keep it disabled, or set it to only filter stuff from people without role to prevent spammers or whatever joining your server to post it.

It compares your images to a very large database of bad images. If your image is similar enough, it's flagged as explicit. It's not actually that simple but that's the concept.

Same idea when you google image search a picture of a cat. google knows what a cat looks like, so not only does it know you gave it a cat picture, but it can give you cat pictures too.

How to Fix it?

As mentioned above, one can only avoid it by disabling it or set it to filter only from people with roles. However, you can also try these steps.

  • Try Switch Between Discord Web And The App

There are times where either the Discord app will have issues sending images or Discord web is having issues and will not allow users to send images.

So if you are using the Discord app and can’t send images, try using Discord web. If you are on Discord web and can’t send images then try sending the image on the app.

If you have followed through on everything, and Discord is still not working, then it may be time to reach out to Discord support for help.

  • Contact Discord Support

If nothing seems to be working, then try reaching out to Discord support and see if they can help you. You can access Discord’s support page here.

It’s possible that the fix is out of your control and you may need Discord themselves to help you fix the issue.

That's all for today, hope you enjoyed today's article. Make sure to join our official Discord server to discuss further on this topic or suggest new articles!

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Suyash Raj

I am a developer, designer, and writer. I write on web technologies and also blog about football. I love to travel as well. You can say I'm a polymath. Feel free to talk to me about anything! -Vale-