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TikTok has tens of thousands of content moderators in Ireland: CEO

TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew testifies earlier than the Home Power and Commerce Committee within the Rayburn Home Workplace Constructing on Capitol Hill on March 23, 2023 in Washington, DC.

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To identify and take away offensive posts, TikTok has tens of 1000’s of Eire-based employees tasked with content material moderation, CEO Shou Zi Chew mentioned on Thursday.

Talking on the TED2023 Risk convention in Vancouver, British Columbia, Chew mentioned TikTok has “clear neighborhood pointers” and that executives don’t “make any ad-hoc selections” when coping with “unhealthy actors” on the web who put up offensive content material on the app.

“Primarily based on that, we’ve got constructed a group that’s tens of 1000’s of individuals plus machines with a view to determine content material that’s unhealthy, and actively, proactively take away it from the platform,” Chew mentioned.

TikTok, which is owned by China’s ByteDance, is beneath intense stress from U.S. lawmakers who wish to ban the app over considerations it poses a menace to nationwide safety. Chew’s feedback come weeks after the CEO withstood a barrage of robust questioning from U.S. legislators, who’ve additionally criticized TikTok for failing to forestall the unfold of offensive content material on its platform or handle its contribution to an increase in teenage melancholy.

“As an organization, our aim is to not optimize and maximize time spent,” Chew mentioned on Thursday, including that when individuals are glued to their smartphone screens TikTok “will proactively ship you movies to inform you to get off the platform.”

The dangerous content material downside just isn’t distinctive to TikTok. U.S. rivals, together with Meta, guardian of Fb and Instagram, and Google’s YouTube, have confronted related questions from lawmakers.

Chew mentioned TikTok takes the matter critically.

“We actually encourage mother and father to have these conversations with their youngsters of what’s the correct amount of display screen time,” Chew mentioned. “I believe there is a wholesome relationship that it is best to have together with your display screen and, as a enterprise, you understand, we imagine that that steadiness must be met.”

Chew additionally introduced up TikTok’s Mission Texas initiative, which is on the coronary heart of the corporate’s effort to reassure the general public that the info of U.S. customers will stay on home soil and will not fall into the fingers of international governments, most notably China.

Though TikTok is partnering with Silicon Valley software program vendor Oracle to retailer and shield person information, U.S. lawmakers stay involved that Beijing may listen in on U.S. residents or doubtlessly unfold propaganda by way of the TikTok app.

“I can say that we’re constructing all of the instruments to forestall any of those actions from taking place,” Chew mentioned. “And I am very assured that with an unprecedented quantity of transparency that we’re giving on the platform, we are able to cut back this danger to as little as zero as attainable.”

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