UK based safety tech company GoBubble is proud to announce a ‘sporting world first’ partnership with A-Leagues and Professional Footballers Australia to hide hateful comments on social media channels.
It’s the first time the social media channels of an entire sporting league (all A-Leagues clubs and players) will be free from abusive, derogatory, harmful or offensive language, thanks to its GoBubble Community technology.
GoBubble Community uses machine-learning based software that monitors social media accounts in order to identify and deal with abusive, derogatory, harmful or offensive content. The AI powered automated solution, launched late last year by parent company GoBubble, can be tailored to the needs of any organisation and shields them from abuse in a matter of minutes
Online hate is a growing problem and this technology protects the wellbeing of players as well as the community of managers who run the official social media channels of football clubs.
GoBubble Founder Henry Platten said:
“GoBubble Community is proud to be working in partnership with A-Leagues and Professional Footballers Australia, as they make a powerful stand to eradicate online hate and discrimination through the use of our innovative software.
"The A League is taking the lead to roll out use of this technology across all clubs, and we now hope to see this approach replicated by sports governing bodies across the globe. This powerful step will protect teams, players and communities from online abuse, and promote a positive and supportive virtual experience across their social channels."
A-Leagues Managing Director Danny Townsend said: ”Football has a unique power to connect people from all walks of life, and we want the A-Leagues to be the most welcoming and safe place at every level - in our online communities and in real life.
“There is no place for online abuse in our game, and this move is part of our duty of care to players and our fans. The GoBubble Community technology shields anyone who follows player, club and league accounts from seeing harmful abuse and keeps our communities safe.”
PFA Co-Chief Executive Kathryn Gill said: “Social media is a powerful tool that allows players to connect and positively engage with fans, promote their careers and clubs, and share their development as people on and off the pitch.
“But their presence on these platforms unfortunately exposes them to hate and abuse which has no place in our sport or society. This partnership with GoBubble Community continues our commitment to addressing the issue of online harm in partnership with the APL – and ensures we protect the wellbeing of our players and encourages positive experiences online.”
Australia’s eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant said: “These days we often find the cheapest seats in the house are behind a keyboard, with players being subjected to terrible online abuse in the course of doing their jobs. Back in November last year we met with some of the biggest sporting codes in the country and pledged to work together to do more to protect players, coaches and support staff from online abuse.
“I think it’s great to see the A-Leagues and PFA making good on this pledge and taking a proactive approach to protecting their athletes. eSafety will continue pushing the major tech companies to embed Safety by Design into their platforms so that sporting organisations don’t need to take matters into their own hands to keep their players safe on these platforms.”
This announcement follows a successful trial between February 25 and 26 by A-Leagues and PFA, using GoBubble Community’s software on the Twitter profiles of Adelaide Utd, Melbourne Victory and Central Coast Mariners, the clubs participating in the Pride Cup Double Header.
GoBubble is already working with leading sports governing bodies and teams around the globe.
GoBubble is a multi award-winning safety technology company, helping organisations to create safer, healthier, and kinder digital communities.
They care greatly about freedom of speech, and helping to give people access to tools that will shield them from toxicity.
Their innovative machine learning helps to protect people against racism, misogyny, negative LGBTQ+ content and threats. Its turnkey solution can be rolled out to clients in minutes.
GoBubble have three products:
The company is 60% female led at C-Suite with Chair being Patricia Cartes-Andres (former Head of Trust and Safety at Twitter, Facebook and previously Google) and CEO/Founder being Danielle Platten (Global Tech Entrepreneur and former Safety Advisor Member at Twitter, and ex Nickleodeon and BBC).
Facebook’s first Director of Public Policy, Tim Saparapani, is Lead Board Consultant and CRO/Founder Henry Platten was a Police Sergeant and is a global digital safeguarding specialist.
The A-Leagues represent the pinnacle of professional football in Australia, comprising men's, women's, youth and e-leagues competitions.
Since gaining independence from Football Australia at the start of 2021, the A-Leagues are embarking on an ambitious strategy to drive engagement with men’s and women’s elite football and build on football’s undisputed position as the country’s most popular participation sport.
From 2021, the newly re-branded men’s and women’s competitions (brought under the A-Leagues brand to reflect football’s young, inclusive and forward-looking audience) will be shown on the 10 Network and on its sibling, the new-to-market Paramount+ streaming service.
With 12 clubs in the men’s league, and 10 from this season in the women’s competition – plus a commitment to add at least two more next year - the A-Leagues has a stated aim to grow both competitions and create new heroes for its deepening cohort of members and supporters.
About Professional Footballers Australia (PFA)
The PFA is the exclusive collective voice of Australia’s professional footballers. The PFA was established in 1993 with two key objectives: to support the players and build the game.
As the exclusive representative body and collective bargaining agent of Australia’s elite professional footballers, including A-Leagues, Socceroos and Matildas players, the mission today remains the same.
The PFA is the longest established stakeholder in the professional game in Australia with the key to its longevity being the voice of the players. Since its establishment the PFA has, and always will be, run by the players for the players.
The PFA has delivered critical reforms that have enhanced the professional game in Australia and provided players with ‘world-class’ collective bargaining agreements, player development and wellbeing programs and legal representation and advice.
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