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Yahoo Japan's AI starts hiding news comment sections with many defamatory posts

The Yahoo Japan Corp. logo (Mainichi/Tatsuya Michinaga)

TOKYO -- Yahoo Japan Corp. has introduced a new feature in its news distribution service "Yahoo News" that allows artificial intelligence (AI) to automatically hide the comment section of a news article if a certain number of posts are deemed to be slanderous or discriminatory, the information tech giant announced on Oct. 19.

    The announcement by one of the largest portal sites in Japan was made to coincide with the start of the official campaign for the country's Oct. 31 House of Representatives election.

    The comment section of Yahoo News has long been criticized for being a hotbed of discrimination, falsehoods, and defamation, and the company's expert team and AI have taken measures such as deleting posts deemed "violating the platform rules" and suspending users who have made rule-violating comments multiple times, but these measures have been pointed out as insufficient.

    In response to this, the company has now introduced a function that automatically hides the entire comment section for articles with a certain number of posts deemed against the rules by AI.

    In addition, during the lower house election period, when a user tries to post comments related to political news, a warning will be issued stating that posting false information about candidates and writing posts that are defamatory or insulting will also be subject to criminal penalties.

    (Japanese original by Digital News Center)

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