AI Against Drug Dealers Reveals How Social Tech Giants Have Now Made Their First Move Against “Opioid Epidemic”
Social media and drugs—they both could be very addictive, and when one uses the other to lure victims – that becomes a deadly concoction of illusion and self-destruction. What started as a fiery post from Washington Post in September 2018 has now forced tech giants across the globe to come together against online drug selling online.
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Tech Together to Fight the Opioid Crisis—That’s the coalition between Facebook, Google and Twitter who are partnering to help those struggling with addiction and also identify dealers digging the ditch for the society. The coalition is headed by the Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies (CSIP).
Back in September 2018, Monika Bickert, Vice President of Global Policy Management at Facebook had clearly outlined her company’s policy against selling drugs online using Facebook and Instagram as a vendor platform.
Monika iterated how Facebook is developing new AI and machine learning-based algorithms to proactively identify drug seller and buyers from using social media platforms. From identifying this drug cartel to informing constitutional ant-drug communities, Facebook clearly mentioned their mission promoting the anti-drug drive using AI and other technologies.
Moving a step closer to reality, it is now speculated that this week, Facebook and Instagram, and Twitter, are joining forces to deal stringently with drug dealers online. In a blog post published in Facebook Newsroom, Kevin Martin, VP of US Public Policy revived what Monika had previously mentioned in her blog post.
Blaming internet squarely as a ‘force of good and ill’, Kevin channelized his words on “forging partnerships, building technology, and supporting communities we believe we can lift up the good and defend against the bad…”
Things we see the tech giants doing it together to fight drug epidemic online are listed below:
- Identify and report the drug sellers and buyers on a real-time to the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration and Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies
- Build a community program to educate and create awareness among drug abusers
- Organize an online army of those who were previously inflicted with the drug stigma but are now sane
- Use image recognition, speech and text analytics, and deciphering tools to identify coy discussion on drug selling
- Use of AI to connect the dots between other social issues like suicide prevention, marital conflicts, terror transactions, currency conversions, and talks of teenage sex and abuse
AI and machine learning could be the biggest ammunition to fight against the drug dealers online. Only if, the technology is not weaponized by drug dealers and pharmacies themselves to find the way around Social barriers.