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Mediahuis Ireland teams up with Irish content moderation start-up CaliberAI

The start-up uses a unique dataset to help reduce the likelihood of potentially defamatory text being published

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Mediahuis titles such as Independent.ie will use CaliberAI software to help reduce the likelihood of potentially defamatory text being published

Mediahuis titles such as Independent.ie will use CaliberAI software to help reduce the likelihood of potentially defamatory text being published

Mediahuis titles such as Independent.ie will use CaliberAI software to help reduce the likelihood of potentially defamatory text being published

CaliberAI, an Irish company that uses artificial intelligence to provide pre-publication warning of potentially defamatory or harmful content, has signed a contract to supply its technology to Mediahuis Ireland.

The start-up uses a unique dataset, assembled by an internationally-based team of editors, developers, lawyers and linguists, to help reduce the likelihood of potentially defamatory text getting published.

CaliberAI was founded by Neil and Conor Brady. Neil formerly worked at The Guardian and Storyful while Conor is a former Editor of The Irish Times. Paul Watson, formerly of Storyful, is the Chief Technology Officer.

CaliberAI CEO Neil Brady described the collaboration with Mediahuis as “an important early step in bringing the power of artificial intelligence to the work of editors and journalists striving for the highest of standards, both in editorial content and construction of AI technology”.

“We’re delighted to be working with new partners who share these values,” Mr Brady said.

CaliberAI is a Trinity College Dublin ‘spinout’ that prototyped its technology through The ADAPT Centre there, with initial funding provided through Enterprise Ireland’s (EI) Commercialisation Fund.

In late 2020 it completed a successful seed round, just under half of which was provided through EI’s High Potential Start Up (HPSU) fund.

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“CaliberAI’s tech is a product of many disciplines, but the common denominator is our team’s expertise in ethical decision-making and high-quality news publishing,” Neil Brady said.

“We offer solutions across two areas – defamation and harm-speech (hate-speech) – but, in reality, it’s often the nebulous space in between the two that can do more damage, and prove equally costly to media companies.”

Deputy Publisher of Mediahuis Ireland Edward McCann said: “Mediahuis Ireland is pleased to team up with an innovative Irish start-up business like CaliberAI and we look forward to working with Neil and his team over the coming months.

“We are interested in exploring how CaliberAI can help us with our core aim of publishing reliable, trustworthy information.”

While CaliberAI’s most obvious application is to traditional news publishers, as policymakers around the world seek to impose liability for internet publishing, its potential customer base extends to include many others involved in the public conversation, and social media companies in particular.


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