FB bullying alert system developed

FB bullying alert system developed

The father-of-four Paddy Clarke’s software scans walls and inboxes for trigger words and phrases such as “gay” and “fat” and alerts parents when they appear, the Daily Mail reported. Clarke said he hoped his system, called “Know Diss”, will keep children safe from online bullies. “Cyber-bullying is very topical at the moment, but this software is the only one in the world to search through text on social networking sites to protect children.

“Know Diss is a very simple concept. It is also a partnership between parent and child because one cannot sign up without the other,” the 48-year-old said. Clarke, a consultant in pain relief at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in Gloucester, joined forces with friend Alan Saul to design and implement Know Diss, which costs £12 for a yearly subscription.

Together they trawled through sites such as Urban Dictionary and watched the television series Skins to build their comprehensive database of insults. Clarke’s program continuously searches through all text on Facebook accounts signed up to the service, including messages, picture comments and posts.

It uses a database of several thousands of words to identify bullying trigger words in a number of spelling variations.

Parents and their children must both sign up by email for the software to work.  When a bullying phrase is detected, it is copied and immediately emailed to the child’s parent or “Facebook guardian” who can decide whether further action is needed.