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A letter from our CEO on new safety policies and features on Yubo

5 minutes read

- Written by Sacha Lazimi

We take seriously our responsibility to make Yubo as safe as possible, and we have put safety at the core of every decision since our launch to fulfill that responsibility. As the online landscape continues to change, we, too, are constantly evolving and upgrading our practices and systems to ensure safety is built in by design.

The devastating events of 24 May in Uvalde, Texas, brought to light systemic issues in society that need to be addressed. We are dedicated to doing our part by identifying and implementing safety solutions to the Yubo platform. In the days since, we have been working to accelerate safety developments in our pipeline and further expand the scope of existing safeguards across our platform. We have made meaningful changes to Yubo during this time and will continue to roll out additional developments in the weeks ahead as part of our continuing commitment to safety innovation in social media. 

The following enhancements have been expedited to supplement our existing safety practices and provide greater support for our users:

  1. Updated risk-detection policy
    Yubo has broadened its policy to review content and act on infractions based on more stringent laws and regulations around sexual behavior and harassment; hate speech; weapons; violence; drugs; and animal abuse, among other risks. Previously, our response to content related to these risk areas was determined by corresponding laws in the region where the content was posted. We feel it is in all users’ best interest that we apply more severe standards to content review and intervention across the board.
  2. Enhanced user-reporting capabilities
    This summer, Yubo users worldwide will be able to attach up to four media files, such as screenshots or video recordings, to any reports they submit, thereby providing greater context to Yubo team members tasked with reviewing reports and taking action accordingly. Yubo is committed to ensuring that every user has sufficient agency to acknowledge how they are feeling, and if uncomfortable, take steps to voice their concerns. User feedback is essential to our mission to continually improve the safety of our platform. 
  3. Audio-moderation technology 
    Roughly half of people who have reported experiencing harassment in online gaming, where live streaming has historically been most prevalent, were targeted by voice, according to a report by the Anti-Defamation League. Yet innovations in audio moderation have struggled to keep pace with advances in real-time image and video moderation. On Tuesday, 31 May, Yubo became one of the first social media companies in the world to deploy audio-moderation technology, supplementing our existing capabilities to allow for comprehensive automatic moderation across the platform. Developed in partnership with Hive, the technology is being tested in beta for English-speaking users with the goal of expanding to additional languages.
  4.  Combined-signals risk detection algorithm 
    On Tuesday, 31 May, Yubo deployed a new algorithm-based detection system, which we have been developing for over six months. The algorithm aggregates and assesses a combination of signals – keywords, emojis, and images, for example – to evaluate content with context. This bolsters our other safety detection tools, which scan for individual signals of infractions or risk, and provides enriched context to our emergency escalation team.

As a leading social platform for teens and young adults, we are committed to prioritizing the safety of our users. As such, Yubo is guided by a safety advisory board of respected thought leaders from organizations such as the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) and Thorn, as well as partner organizations in government, law enforcement, NGOs, and charities. We are thankful for their support as we continue to develop and improve the Yubo platform for our users.

We remain shocked and deeply saddened by this recent tragedy. Our thoughts are with the victims, their families, and all who have been impacted.

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