The economic impact of online hate on businesses

Online hate, toxic content and cyberharassment have been increasingly present in the headlines. While the physical and mental effects on those involved have been addressed more frequently, not every business is aware of the economic impact that comes with online toxicity.

Sabina Mihutescu

Sabina Mihutescu

Hateful and toxic content affects everyone from individuals to institutions, and the implications are more far-reaching than the more immediate and easy-to-see consequences. As the numerous and complicated consequences of this problem continue to become more tangible, businesses are having to reflect on the best ways to combat the issue.

Companies are wondering what role they should play to curb increasing toxicity. Many are asking whether a moderation solution would help to stymie this trend, and they have begun searching for the role that technology can play in solving the problem.

User protection: corporate responsibility

Assuring the protection of users, communities, teams, employees, and managers is a major aspect of corporate social responsibility (CSR) for any organization.

To foster a culture that emphasizes trust and safety, it is important to reduce the users’ exposure to harmful, fraudulent, and abusive content.

Trust and safety are central to the protection and growth of any healthy community. People who have trust in a community are more likely to express themselves freely. In contrast, individuals that are harassed or exposed to toxic content are most likely to engage less or even leave the community altogether.

Security is equally important to a community because it is what keeps away illegal and dangerous online behavior that could have devastating consequences.

Moderation: A new essential for companies

After an exponential rise in online interactions and the toxic content that has accompanied these exchanges, the need for moderation has become painfully obvious.

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated and strengthened digitization as a majority of people who were isolated in their homes migrated communications on-line in place of traditional face-to-face interactions.

The current health and economic landscape has left people frustrated, and this has translated to a 56% increase in hateful online comments during the first lockdown in France for example.

The creation of platforms to facilitate online communication is great, but as soon as a platform allows for user created content to be published (comment sections on websites, real-time interactions with online events, social media, applications, forums, etc.), moderation becomes crucial.

The financial impact of moderation (or lack thereof)

Every business has a vested interest in bringing in more users, increasing the time spent on its platforms, and creating an engaged community. Consider this quick stat:

80% of visitors will leave a platform that contains toxic and hateful content.

Creating a safe and healthy community can be the best way to increase user acquisition and retention. This, in turn, leads to increased revenues either directly for the company, or through partnerships, sponsorships, and advertising.

Having a moderation solution in place for platforms and communities can provide organisations with:

  • 100% brand safety
  • 60% increase in time spent on the ‘clean’ platform
  • 3x return visitors.

The current moderation solutions landscape

Historically, the go-to solution for these problems was human moderation, but this has proved to be time-consuming and costly. More recently, automated technologies have made it possible to streamline this process.

Bodyguard, the moderation solution for protecting communities and platforms

In response to the increased amount of online hate, Bodyguard has developed a unique moderation technology that can protect businesses, brands, platforms and their communities from toxicity.

Bodyguard’s technology detects, analyzes, and moderates toxic online content. Notably, it protects users and communities from insults, trolling, racism, homophobia, threats, sexual harassment, and misogyny.

The solution boasts the ability to detect, analyze and treat hateful content on Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, Twitch, Facebook, and other online platforms (website, applications, forums, etc.) via an API.

The Bodyguard technology provides:

  • a contextual understanding and ability to decipher internet language
  • a real-time and scalable moderation capability
  • advanced customization adapted to the needs of each client and industry
  • actionable data to help grow the community
  • a 90% detection rate of hateful content.

Bodyguard is already a trusted partner for:

  • Media organizations - protecting their social networks, platforms as well as their journalists.
  • Sports club - protecting the club, the players, and the managers.
  • Social platforms - providing a third-party solution for expert moderation.
  • Gaming - facilitating communication between players for a positive gaming experience.

In an online climate that is often fraught with hateful and toxic content, it is critical to protect your business.