The Problem with Keywords – Fake News and the Dilemma of Curated Content

Search engine platforms and content aggregators have us all well trained in using keywords and long string statements to search for information and content. The phrase “Google it” has become part of the dictionary along with “Xerox it,” “pass me a Kleenex,” and “Amazon Prime it.”

But some recent hiccups at the Department of Justice illustrate how keywords aren’t enough – they don’t adequately capture the context of a document or piece of information. This makes identifying and capturing the content you want increasingly complex in the “world of fake news.”

An Off-Key Newsletter

A recent report on Buzzfeed demonstrated the challenges and dangers associated with using keywords solely to curate news and media content for updates to key stakeholders.

In his article, Hamed Aleaziz highlights the fallout that occurred after a newsletter was forwarded to Immigration Judges that included a link to a white nationalist website that “is antithetical to the goals and ideals of the Department of Justice.”

There are significant risks for communications and PR teams in using simple keywords to curate third-party content, particularly if the process is to then pass it along to a broader audience with no oversight or review capacity.

Take a Step Back

So how did a situation like this occur? How did a piece of inappropriate content that is clearly not intended for distribution make its way to a prestigious and highly sensitive stakeholder group like the Immigration Court judges and their staff?

Inadequate oversight of the third-party contractor responsible for implementing keyword searches and creating the newsletter for dissemination is part of the problem. Implementing additional controls and monitoring of the content that is being curated and delivered to the distribution list of the communications team at the Executive Office of Immigration Review (EOIR) is necessary. But with time and resource constraints, how does this get accomplished?

The AI Solution

Using the latest technologies in AI like machine learning and natural language processing can enable communications and PR professionals to quickly and easily identify news and media content that meets their specific content needs. Inflammatory and fake news articles like the white nationalist blog post can be programmatically excluded from sourcing. The AI technology captures quality content and then engages with human curation of the recommended news and media for dissemination across a large variety of communications.

The AI technology we have developed at Contexture doesn’t rely on keywords. Instead, it uses natural language expressions, behavioral analytics, and machine learning to create rich contextual user profiles. The technology continually surfaces interesting news, media, and policy content that is critically important to the needs of corporations, associations, and government. At the same time, inappropriate and unrelated content like the link in the EOIR newsletter is automatically disregarded by the AI technology.

In today’s media world, the ability to quickly and easily differentiate ‘what’s important in digital media has become a critical capability. The sheer volumes of digital content make this a core practice for any organization. However, the risk of disseminating information that is offensive, inflammatory, and inappropriate requires the implementation of tools and technology that can be effective and efficient for PR and communications teams. At Contexture, we enable our customers’ success in digital news, media and policy monitoring, and intelligence through our AI technology – Mediawatch and Billwatch.

Leave a Reply