Content moderation is an unpleasant but necessary task for many companies. It’s the job of someone to sit at a computer and review comments on your website or decide whether to ban or allow users who violate your terms of service or manually scan through photos to ensure they don’t include anything sensitive. But it’s also a job that can take up a lot of time, time that people could spend doing more relevant work for the company.
What if there were a way for computers to do the heavy lifting when it comes to freeing up time and energy that could be better spent elsewhere? What if computers could use artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to determine if something is inappropriate without being told what is and isn’t okay by people?
AI brings this promise to content moderation. The promise has been borne out by several companies who have already taken advantage of it.
What is Content Moderation?
Before we look at how content moderation AI can be valuable to your business, we must get to know what content moderation is in the first place. So, what is content moderation? It is the process of sifting through and removing inappropriate content from a platform. It’s a job that is hard to scale. Still, companies like Facebook and Twitter are using artificial intelligence to help fight offensive content amid their struggles with a massive influx of users and the resulting content moderation crisis.
Reasons Many Companies are turning to AI to Control their Content
As we’ve seen with the recent Facebook controversy and the scrutiny around content moderation, moderating large amounts of user-generated content is a complex and time-consuming process. Many companies have turned to artificial intelligence to help moderate their content and make work easier. Although automated moderation is still far from perfect, it’s much more scalable than manual moderation, which is important for businesses tasked with moderating an ever-increasing amount of content.
The two main types of AI used for content moderation are machine learning and natural language processing, which use algorithms to detect potentially objectionable or damaging material in a document. While machine learning uses statistical methods and big data to determine the probability that users will flag a given piece of content, NLP uses linguistic analysis to determine the likelihood that a given word or phrase will be perceived as offensive or harmful.
Both machine learning and NLP are combined to detect dangerous material: machine learning gives an overall probability of whether an image or piece of writing will be flagged, while NLP looks at specific words and phrases to understand what kind of reaction they might elicit in readers.
Here are some reasons you should use AI to control the content on your business website:
- Content moderation AI reduces stress for employees
Before you can understand how stressful employees can be concerning moderating what should be accessible to visitors of a site, you should ask yourself the question; what is content moderation. Based on the definition we have already provided here, it is clear that it takes a lot of skill, time, and energy to manually moderate every piece of content that goes up on your site. So, it’s crucial to have a dedicated team who can handle the job daily. But when companies take on too much workload with their staff, they risk burning out their workers or even losing them altogether. Anecdotally, we’ve seen many people leave the industry entirely because they couldn’t handle the workload anymore.
- It helps ensure compliance
It can ensure that you comply with legal requirements for censoring harmful or illegal content from being posted on your site–a necessary part of running any community or marketplace.
- You can use it on a variety of your business sites or platforms
Another significant benefit of using AI is that you can apply it to various platforms on which your business may have accounts without needing to hire dedicated moderators. For example, if you run an ecommerce site, you might want to use an AI system to ensure your sponsored ads aren’t showing up on controversial sites. This way, you won’t have to have someone monitoring thousands of different places every day.
- It’s expensive to hire human moderators
When looking at how much money you spend on your employees, you’ll need to consider how much you’re paying them and how that salary breaks down per hour. If you have an employee who earns $15 an hour, for example, but you only use that employee for an hour a week, the cost of that employee is $120 per week, 5 x $15. On the other hand, if you have an employee who earns $30 an hour but only works three hours a week, their cost is calculated as $90 per week 3 x $30.
If we apply this logic to content moderation AI and human moderators, we can see that the AI costs less money per hour of use than the human moderator. It is because when you’re using a human moderator, you need to account for wages/salaries and benefits. In most cases, wages and salaries are your highest costs, while benefits will also be significant and vary depending on where in the world your business operates.
When wages or salaries are higher than benefits, it’s generally easier to justify using humans over AI because humans don’t require benefits. However, AI is usually more cost-effective if they are lower than the benefits.
- Enables a company to be in control
Content moderation AI offers businesses control over what their customers are exposed to that they are unlikely to find elsewhere. It can help increase trust among customers who fear that they might see something they don’t want to when browsing through social media pages or forums.
Content moderation AI makes it possible to screen content without access. Not accessing the content saves companies from potential legal issues regarding data privacy and freedom of speech. It also ensures no exposure of confidential information or trade secrets to competitors.
Content moderation AI is an invaluable tool for businesses of all kinds. Its ability to quickly and accurately assess offensive content is a boon in fighting against hate speech, terrorism propaganda, and other unsavory content. This technology can make it easy for your company to keep up with constantly changing content, and you can use it to build a better brand image while protecting your users from harm.