Stopping Cyber Bullying Using AI

Computer scientist with innovation in mind at the University of Aston, located in Birmingham, have created this potentially social media changing app called ‘Bullstop’ the app uses a novel algorithm that helps fight against trolling and bullying. When downloaded the app integrates itself within your social media platforms and shields you from any trolls and bullies contacting them through private messaging. The targeted demographic for this app is aged 13 and upwards, the app was created by Semiu Salawu, a researcher in the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences who claims;

This application differs from other apps because the use of artificial intelligence to detect cyberbullying is unique in itself, other anti-cyberbullying apps, in comparison, use keywords to detect instances of bullying, inappropriate or threatening language
Image of Semiu Salawu  Credit: Google Scholar

Image of Semiu Salawu Credit: Google Scholar

Semiu Salawu states that the artificial intelligent had been trained on over sixty thousand tweets to identify abusive and offensive language and tweets that use sarcasm and exclusion to bully which would be hard to detect only using certain keywords

The app works by monitoring user’s social media profile and scans for offensive incoming messages and deletes the messages immediately from the user’s inbox using their novel algorithm, then you can later access what was deleted through the app.

Reason to create this app could have been influenced by a study by a website called, they surveyed over 1000 parents globally and found that between 2018 and 2020, one-fifth of all bullying occurred through social media and apps, with a further 11% occurring via text messages, which is scary as anyone can be behind the screen. According to data from Israeli start-up company, L1ght in Digital Trends accounts of cyber bullying skyrocketed by around 70% at the start of lock down, leaving younger people particularly subjected to online difficulties. Since the outbreak of Covid-19 there has been an increase in user’s on social media, and with an increase in users comes an increase in trolls and bullies meaning more people are becoming victims of cyber bullying, this can be severe on a person’s mental health as lock down has already taken a toll on many people’s mental health ,young and old, I believe it is important to be thinking of different ways to make social media a safer and positive place and that this app could potentially help reduce people’s mental stress.

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