New algorithms being developed to combat gender online abuse may help “promote positive social and cultural change.”

Both the Scottish Government and the British Government welcome the work of researchers at the National Robotalium of the United Kingdom, involving Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh.

Researchers there are working on advanced “machine learning” algorithms that can significantly improve online abuse detection and help with intervention and prevention.

Funded by the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) for £ 1m (€ 1.6 million), the project is a high-tech AI tool that uses a variety of perspectives, perspectives and experiences to improve online fraud detection. will be created. ..

In addition, this work involves developing new materials to help young people understand and recognize and respond to online gender-based violence.

Professor Verena Rieser said this work will help create “an equally secure online space regardless of someone’s gender, race or background” (National Robotarium / PA).

Verena Rieser, Principal Researcher and Professor of Conversational AI at the National Robotalium, said the project not only “rethinks what needs to be detected” for online abuse, but also “the best way to support victims.” “The role that education can play as a tool” is also mentioned. For prevention. “

A professor at Heriot-Watt University said: “The outcome of this project is to create an equally secure online space regardless of gender, race or background, provide a more effective and transparent moderation tool, and give users more control over their online experience. will do so. “

Dr. Fiona McNeill, a collaborator and reader of computer science education at the National Robotalium, said that online abuse can be a “big problem for children and adolescents” as well as adults. “Work with young people to understand the experience of online abuse, the languages ​​used around them, and the ways in which young victims need to be assisted.”

She states: “Through this interactive work, we provide materials to help young people understand and recognize online gender-based violence, build confidence in responding to it as a victim or bystander, and recognize whether they are committing. Create it. “

Scottish Minister Ian Stuart welcomed the investigation and said:

“Online platforms that are too long allow for the most sneaky forms of targeted abuse, have little impact on perpetrators, and have minimal support and protection for victims.

“We hope that this research on new AI algorithms will be a valuable tool for counterattacking and creating a safer online environment.”

“Everyone, online or offline, should feel equally safe and respected,” said Kate Forbes, Scottish Economic Secretary.

She added: “As a key element of the City Region Deal, the team behind the National Robotarium is helping to tackle online abuse by using artificial intelligence to make society more inclusive.

“This work will drive positive social and cultural change with the potential to create perceived impacts far beyond Edinburgh and the southeast of Scotland.”

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