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Checkstep - AI-based content moderation

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by Startacus Admin

checkstep pic.

The lowdown on UK-based startup Checkstep and its innovative AI-powered solution for contextual content moderation.

checkstep.Anyone who has ever peeked into the world of the internet is aware of how unpleasant it generally is anywhere that people are allowed to post comments. From petty arguments all the way through to straight up racism, child exploitation, and threatening behaviour, just about every online community is full of vitriol and people who shouldn’t be allowed to communicate with other humans.

This, of course, gives rise to the need for moderators - people who manually trawl through posts and comments, looking for this kind of poor behaviour to get rid of it. They are aided by tools to automatically delete comments and maybe ban users when they see certain words, and to flag less clear-cut but still questionable content. The problem is that these tools usually only look for pre-programmed terms, meaning that there remain plenty of ways for people to circumvent automatic moderation.

This is where UK startup Checkstep comes in. The startup’s platform provides human moderators with more powerful tools to keep their online spaces safe.

The most powerful of these is cutting-edge machine learning so that moderators can have an AI partner doing a better job than the usual word-search tools. The AI can review not only text but, unlike most current systems, can also look at images, video, audio recordings, and can be customised for specific needs. This lowers the number of ways that people can circumvent automatic moderation, addressing anything from spam and scams, to bullying and hate speech, to the spread propaganda, and it provides the human moderators with an explanation for every decision it makes.

checkstep imageIt can also look specifically for things that aren’t necessarily problematic, but are against the client’s policies, and because of how intelligent it is, the time spent teaching it new policies is greatly reduced. This allows the human moderators to spend their time on the more ambiguous issues.

In May, Checkstep announced that it had raised £3.95 million in a Seed round led by Dawn Capital and Form Ventures, with participation from the founders of GoCardLess, Indeed, and Redbus Media Group. This funding will go towards further developing the platform’s capabilities and making it the place to go for content moderation.

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Published on: 20th June 2022

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