Facebook has approximately 2.26 billion active users. YouTube users upload 300 hours of video every minute, and Twitter boasts approximately 6,000 tweets per second. As these sites grew into having billions of users, moderating content became more of a scale problem. Moderating content such as images, videos, comments, and user profiles has become an around-the-clock task. The solution boils down to two options: Either try to tackle it all in house as it rapidly becomes an overwhelming mess. Or, outsource content moderation teams who are already trained in your industry. Outsourcing content moderation services is the most workable answer to a rapidly growing issue of such scale.

Back at the start of Facebook, 150 employees tackled the process of content moderation one click at a time. But, as the site grew, the one-on-one approach became too massive of a task for in-house employees. Up until just a few years ago even Twitter was still claiming that every report made by a user was reviewed by a member of the Trust and Safety team. Today, both Facebook and Twitter employ a vast amount of workers to efficiently handle these tasks at scale. All human reviews must be handled rapidly which can mean spending only seconds on each complaint putting a huge amount of pressure on these workers. Consistency and fairness are almost impossible to achieve. The process is done with more efficiency when there is an internal team, an outsourced team, and AI working together. It was recently announced that Facebook will be using AI to help its human moderators.

Consider the scale of a site like Twitter. Since it is close to impossible to monitor every last tweet, most platforms embrace a publish-then-filter approach where the platform is able to remove any questionable content when necessary right after it has been posted. Even if you take less than one percent of all tweets that could be a potential problem, it is still more than 150,000 a month. The vast scale of this is challenging to monitor. However, keep in mind that scale and size are not the same thing.

A scale is a complicated mathematical formula that multiplies quantity. In terms of moderating online users, it takes into account a synergistic relationship between a human and AI. As important as content moderation is, it was never meant to operate at such a large scale with some sites weeding through billions of users.

Any content that is allowed to post to an online platform must follow specific rules and community guidelines. Any content that is offensive, vile, or illegal must be moderated and removed. This includes racism, discrimination, phishing threats, terrorism, violence, scams, pornography, and a lot more. Moderating inappropriate content online is a crucial step in protecting innocent users from stumbling upon something that could be damaging to them. An online community that is safe and secure has a greater chance to grow faster and increase user acquisition and activity. It is also important for sites to put their best face forward for potential advertisers.The process sometimes relies on AI technology. While this is a good first line of defense for quick results, it is imperative that an actual human be part of the content moderation process to tackle the numerous gray areas that only a human can decipher. As important as it is that a human steps in to help moderate content, it can quickly become an overwhelming job and very expensive to be done solely in-house.

Sites such as social media communities, video-sharing apps, e-commerce, news, blogs, online directories, and query sites have tons of user-generated content. They are the ones who need to moderate content the most. It is good for these sites to encourage community engagement by letting users voice out their opinions, engage in online discussions, and express their individualities but at the same time it is as equally important to enforce guidelines that will protect the website and its users. It is necessary to send every piece of content through a filter to make sure it measures up to the criteria of the platform’s community standards policy. It is also crucial that individual companies self regulate to avoid legal trouble.

Outsourcing content moderation offers a huge advantage, especially in regard to instant scalability. Just like how Facebook, Twitter and other social media titans grew, it is undeniable that a company should be able to instantly support the growth of their communities. In terms of sustaining constant growth of tech companies, scaling should increase revenue without a significant increase in resources, time and effort. However, the biggest problem that these companies face is that it takes a lot of resources to recruit and train employees, get additional office space, and evaluate team productivity and efficiency while trying to focus on running the business. Google, Salesforce.com, and Twitter are just a few examples of successfully scaled businesses that deal with huge volumes of user-generated content. They quickly adapted to the continuous increase of user activity and provided the best experience to their users through scalable processes; thus, driving consistent growth.

Through outsourcing content moderation, the right outsourcing partner will be able to grow with your company when you need to. With excellent professionals, outsourced content moderation teams are experts who make these massive tasks manageable. By outsourcing these services, it helps to lower costs and ensure maximum productivity to protect a brand’s bottom line and community.