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Unitary - the startup that's making the internet safer with AI

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by Startacus Admin

/unitary image

Innovating online content moderation; Unitary is a startup that has developed context-aware AI to detect harmful content and keep brands and platforms safe.

/l5jReJcN_400x400Anyone brave enough to take a peek at the comments on a YouTube video will know how much spam there is to be found there. Whether it’s smaller YouTubers trying to pick a fight for clicks, irrelevant political babble, or bots, there’s a lot of nonsense, and a lot of it is highly inappropriate. The same goes for chat during a stream. Automated moderation of these is gradually improving, but a lot still gets through. This highlights another question: if moderation of comments is so difficult, how are we moderating the 80-years’ worth of video content that is uploaded to the internet every single day? The answer is obviously not human moderation. The only realistic way to ensure that this content is free of everything from the horrific to the subjectively brand-unsuitable is by employing artificial intelligence.

/unitary ai image.London-based startup Unitary is building a robust AI that can process more than 25,000 frames of video per second, moderating it with what the startup claims are human levels of accuracy. It can do this by taking into account crucial details from what surrounds the video, not just what it is seeing in those frames. This includes things like the title, captions, information boxes, comments, and generally as much context as it can see.

One example the startup uses is that nudity in a medical video is very different to nudity in other contexts, and the AI should be capable of determining that, just as it should be able to tell the difference between glorifying drug-taking and demonstrating how to use an EpiPen. Current automated systems not only miss a lot, but they can also do a lot of harm to creators whose videos are demonetised or taken down entirely because of the system falsely determining them to be unsuitable, and even if an appeal is successful, the damage is already done - that creator has lost revenue and the view spike their video would have received when it was new.

Early this year, Unitary announced that they had raised £6.7 million in investment from the Plural investment fund and additional angel investors. With the amount of online content only increasing, this funding will boost this much-needed intervention in moderation.



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Published on: 17th April 2023

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