Building the Field

Trust & Safety in the Majority World Workshop: Call for Contributions 

April 3, 2024

This workshop will bring together professionals within the field of Trust & Safety (T&S) to discuss socio-technical issues that disproportionately affect the Majority World. We welcome current and previous T&S tech workers (i.e., individuals working in engineering, data science, content moderation, product policy) and relevant stakeholders.

The Trust & Safety (T&S) in the Majority World workshop, hosted by the Institute for Rebooting Social Media and the Integrity Institute, will bring together professionals to discuss the unique concerns that arise in this field within the context of the Majority World. Majority World was coined in the 1990s to encourage a reframing of world dynamics and includes (but not limited to): Africa, South Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Trust and Safety is a set of practices, policies, principles, and tools that promote safety, security, and define acceptable behavior for users on online platforms. These regions in the Majority World have historically been under-resourced and deprioritized in this field; we see mistakes in content moderation, amplification of hate, and safety concerns in the products and features that should serve users in all markets equitably. We are in a pivotal moment in the industry with the landscape of T&S rapidly changing due to threats from emerging technologies and the importance of this work during geopolitical conflicts, elections, and major crises. 

Our goal is to go beyond traditional panels and instead facilitate discussions and brainstorm generative solutions that will lead to working groups, white papers, or proposals to upcoming conferences. We would like to invite participants to share observations, knowledge, and experiences working in majority-world regions and propose interventions, suggest policy changes, curate best practices, and rethink product designs and systems to ensure they will scale globally. We welcome individuals working across various platforms that can share approaches and developments in the T&S field. We also welcome individuals with relevant experiences and perspectives to share on these topics and work in public policy, civil society, and human rights. 

What can I expect?
A designated individual will facilitate each thematic session, sharing a 5-10 minute pitch of a specific topic, idea, and/or solution relevant to the T&S field. We will further discuss the provocations that are brought up in breakout rooms and report back. 

If you have a proposal for a topic to discuss during this workshop, please share it below. We welcome your contributions and expertise and will follow-up with next steps by March 1st if your idea is selected. Potential topics for discussions include (but not limited to):

  • Biased training data in AI systems disproportionately affecting the Majority World
  • Content moderation at scale perpetuating historical power imbalances (i.e under-resourced languages in enforcement systems)

  • Crisis policy protocol and the impact of overenforcement and underenforcement in global contexts

How can I join? 
Submit your proposal by responding to the interest form here. Our selection criteria will prioritize ideas that address current challenges in the field, include diverse experiences of individuals in the Majority World, and align with backgrounds of our attendees in order to provide a foundation for an impactful discussion. Proposals are due by February 20, 2024. If your contribution is selected, we will reach out by March 1, 2024. We encourage you to complete the form as soon as possible, to ensure that you are not placed on a waitlist for participants.

Questions?
Please reach out to Nadah Feteih at nfeteih@cyber.harvard.edu for any questions regarding the workshop or call for contributions.