Content Moderation for Dating Sites

Content Moderation for dating sites is essential for a safe dating experience. If you have used HingeTindereHarmonyThursday or Match.Com you will know all these apps and websites allow you to connect with different people and “compatible” matches from all around the world.

Since COVID lockdowns the rules of social engagement have changed. We find ourselves connecting and interacting online more and more. Gone are the days you walk into a bar and an attractive person approaches you and offers to buy you a drink. Now we live in a world of algorithms, likes, swipes, direct messaging and “thank you, next”.

While some of us (of a certain age) may miss the days of traditional courtship, the internet has opened up a whole new world of possibilities to meet people you may have never encountered in your everyday life.

For those who dreaded the uncomfortable and sometimes mortifying prospect of approaching a complete stranger to ask for their number, we now find ourselves liberated and able to semi-qualify and approach a number of people all at once.

However, with all new tech advancements and moving our lives to a virtual world, there are dangers and pitfalls. Increasingly users are falling prey to scammers, catfishers, hackers and other unsavoury individuals.

What are the common content moderation needs for dating sites?

Here at Checkstep, we know only too well the problems dating sites and their users encounter.

Research conducted by Checkstep shows the top three concerns for dating platforms where:

  1. Fake profiles and spam accounts (issues with scammers and underage users);
  2. Improper behaviour and sharing of uninvited sexually explicit messages and images;
  3. Fraudulent and immoral behaviour like swindling, catfishing and sexploitation (including sharing of sensitive information and PII).

Without proper moderation and active community reporting, these problems can soon get out of hand and result in customer churn and reputational crisis.

What does content moderation mean for dating sites?

Content moderation involves checking images, videos, text and audio shared by members, users or followers of a specific online community. This can include dating sites, social media networks, gaming platforms, streaming services, marketplaces, forums, review sites, online community groups and more.

The main function of an online dating app or site is to assist people in making new connections online. One of the biggest issues with apps and services developed for entertainment and social networking is the difficulty platforms have in judging a person’s intentions prior to them joining the site.

In these circumstances, moderation within the dating industry means closely observing user activities, along with the user information and posts shared with others across the platform or service.

When thinking about your approach to mass moderation, there are several strategies you may like to consider.

Types of content moderation for dating sites


The content is checked for any violations in context to format prior to it being uploaded and made public. By using a particular set of guidelines for your site, AI automation and/or human moderators assess posts and have the authority to approve or reject them.

Post moderation

This is the opposite of pre-moderation. Post assessments of content are more concerned with real time interactions between community members, meaning user posts are published prior to them being analysed by AI or human moderators.

Distributed moderation

Distributed moderation is when a site engages users or members and empowers them to decide whether to remove content from the site.

Reactive moderation (community reporting)

Reactive moderation (also called community reporting) is as cost effective and as labour efficient as distributed moderation. It enables members to identify posts or user generated content (UGC) that are considered unsuitable for the website platform or community.

Automated moderation

As suggested, it uses automated functions (AI) to enhance the speed of reviewing everything that people share online. A basic example of automated moderation is the application of filters to expose specific keywords, phases or words that include or represent prohibited dialogue and themes.

Why moderate content?

Keeping your users safe through continual and proactive moderation is one of most significant factors when building trust, credibility and engagement on your platform. When a platform or dating site becomes a breeding ground for catfishing, swindling, scams, inappropriate user behaviour and reviews, it is likely that brand reputation will diminish and potential users will avoid using the platform altogether.

Benefits of content moderation for dating sites

Moderate and verify dating user profiles

Through a tech solution or through human moderation, dating sites can verify user profiles. This includes examining all the images, facts and personal information provided by new members to develop the profile. Moderation will verify the user’s age, check email addresses and usernames, alongside ensuring celebrity photos are not used. All this can contribute significantly to eliminating fake accounts and prevent situations of minors bypassing the security system of the site.

Detect and prevent catfishing attempts

Even though catfishing is inevitable and still ever present in online dating, it does not make it acceptable. Many people that register on dating websites still have genuine intentions and are serious about finding love and connections.

AI and human moderation coupled with community reporting can uncover fake profiles more efficiently and rapidly. Using automation alongside human moderation, dating sites can help to educate and mentor users on what to do if they encounter spam, scams or fake profiles and provide support services and guidance if they have fallen victim.

Scan the content of user generated posts

Several dating sites have forums that permit members to post on a variety of topics and interests. Regrettably, there are predators lurking around every corner.

These users often use alias accounts and are renowned for posting unsolicited and inappropriate images. These individuals who struggle to control their urges tend to post unpleasant comments and make other members feel uneasy. Using automated moderation (AI), dating sites can ensure a more precise and real-time review of all user posts and activities. This ensures that spam can instantly be filtered, while unsuitable content and profiles are identified and deleted.

Moderate content on dating direct messages

Alongside monitoring what users publicly share on the site, there is another area which is important to moderate. This is within the direct messages exchanged between users.

Aside from the catfishers and the scammers, hackers and malicious users turn to bullying and harassment. They torment other members through sending illicit comments, photos or threats.

Even conversations that once started off as pleasant and flirty can take a turn and devolve into hate speech, threats of violence, sextortion, and other harmful behaviour.

Messages can be pre-moderated using AI and provide prompts and warning notices to users before they send. Post moderation can delete or add a warning to the receiving party that the content may be harmful or sensitive in nature.

Bring more people to the site

Dating app moderation is not only a device for offence or defence against the risks of dating and online socialising. It can also benefit a business’s bottom line. A well-disciplined and managed online forum and social space creates a fun and appealing user experience. It reduces harm caused by spam content or negative user feedback caused by online trolls, catfishers and predators.

As more users visit the dating website or use the app, search engines will recognise and boost its rankings on the search results. Marketing strategies will be more effective and see a boost in engagement. Eventually, people will see the platform as safe and credible, which will improve brand recognition.

Key Takeaway for dating site content moderation

In the absence of a reliable set of dating moderation provisions, users are at greater risk of being catfished or exploited. The standard of user experience and created connections is also compromised.

Those dating sites scaling and finding it harder to rely on community reports and manual moderation should look at outsourcing moderation services.

Checkstep, is an organisation that offers AI and human moderation solutions to keep users safe. If you would like to find out more about content moderation for your dating site, contact us here.

More posts like this

We want content moderation to enhance your users’ experience and so they can find their special one more easily.

Podcast Moderation at Scale: Leveraging AI to Manage Content

The podcasting industry has experienced an explosive growth in recent years, with millions of episodes being published across various platforms every day. As the volume of audio content surges, ensuring a safe and trustworthy podcast environment becomes a paramount concern. Podcast moderation plays a crucial role in filtering and managing podcast episodes to prevent the…
4 minutes

Content Moderators : How to protect their Mental Health ? 

Content moderation has become an essential aspect of managing online platforms and ensuring a safe user experience. Behind the scenes, content moderators play a crucial role in reviewing user-generated content, filtering out harmful or inappropriate materials, and upholding community guidelines. However, the task of content moderation is not without its challenges, as it exposes moderators…
4 minutes

Text Moderation: Scale your content moderation with AI

In today's interconnected world, text-based communication has become a fundamental part of our daily lives. However, with the exponential growth of user-generated text content on digital platforms, ensuring a safe and inclusive online environment has become a daunting task. Text moderation plays a critical role in filtering and managing user-generated content to prevent harmful or…
4 minutes

Audio Moderation: AI-Driven Strategies to Combat Online Threats

In today's digitally-driven world, audio content has become an integral part of online platforms, ranging from podcasts and audiobooks to user-generated audio clips on social media. With the increasing volume of audio content being generated daily, audio moderation has become a critical aspect of maintaining a safe and positive user experience. Audio moderation involves systematically…
4 minutes

How to use Content Moderation to Build a Positive Brand Image

The idea of reputation has changed dramatically in the digital age, moving from conventional word-of-mouth to the wide world of user-generated material on the internet. Reputation has a long history that reflects changes in communication styles, cultural developments, and technological advancements. The importance of internet reviews has been highlighted by recent research conducted by Bright…
5 minutes

The Evolution of Content Moderation Rules Throughout The Years

The birth of the digital public sphere This article is contributed by Ahmed Medien. Online forums and social marketplaces have become a large part of the internet in the past 20 years since the early bulletin boards on the internet and AOL chat rooms. Today, users moved primarily to social platforms, platforms that host user-generated content. These…
7 minutes

Video Moderation : It’s Scale or Fail with AI

In the digital age, video content has become a driving force across online platforms, shaping the way we communicate, entertain, and share experiences. With this exponential growth, content moderation has become a critical aspect of maintaining a safe and inclusive online environment. The sheer volume of user-generated videos poses significant challenges for platforms, necessitating advanced…
4 minutes

AI Ethics Expert’s Corner : Kyle Dent, Head of AI Ethics

This month we’ve added a new “Expert’s Corner” feature starting with an interview with our own Kyle Dent, who recently joined Checkstep. He answers questions about AI ethics and some of the challenges of content moderation. AI Ethics FAQ with Kyle Dent If you would like to catch up on other thought leadership pieces by…
4 minutes

Misinformation Expert’s Corner : Preslav Nakov, AI and Fake News

Preslav Nakov has established himself as one of the leading experts on the use of AI against propaganda and disinformation. He has been very influential in the field of natural language processing and text mining, publishing hundreds of peer reviewed research papers. He spoke to us about his work dealing with the ongoing problem of…
8 minutes

Checkstep Raises $1.8M Seed Funding to Combat Online Toxicity

Early stage startup gets funding for R&D effort to develop advanced content moderation technology We’re thrilled to announce that Checkstep recently closed a $1.8m seed funding round to further develop our advanced AI product offering contextual content moderation. The round was carefully selected to be diverse, international, and with a significant added value to our business. Influential personalities…
3 minutes

Expert’s Corner with Checkstep CEO Guillaume Bouchard

This month’s expert is Checkstep’s CEO and Co-Founder Guillaume Bouchard. After exiting his previous company, Bloomsbury AI to Facebook, he’s on a mission to better prepare online platforms against all types of online harm. He has a PhD in applied mathematics and machine learning from INRIA, France. 12 years of scientific research experience at Xerox…
3 minutes

Expert’s Corner with Community Building Expert Todd Nilson

Checkstep interviews expert in online community building Todd Nilson leads transformational technology projects for major brands and organizations. He specializes in online communities, digital workplaces, social listening analysis, competitive intelligence, game thinking, employer branding, and virtual collaboration. Todd has managed teams and engagements with national and global consultancy firms specialized in online communities and the…
7 minutes

Blowing the Whistle on Facebook

Wondering what all the fuss is around the Facebook Papers? Get the lowdown here. A large trove of recently leaked documents from Meta/Facebook promises to keep the social platform in the news, and in hot water, for some time to come. While other recent “Paper” investigations (think Panama and Paradise) have revealed fraud, tax evasion,…
7 minutes

Expert’s Corner with Head of Research Isabelle Augenstein

This month we were very happy to sit down with one of the brains behind Checkstep who is also a recognized talent among European academics. She is the co-head of research at Checkstep and also an associate professor at the University of Copenhagen. She currently holds a prestigious DFF Sapere Aude Research Leader fellowship on ‘Learning to…
5 minutes

What is Content Moderation ? 

Content moderation is the strategic process of evaluating, filtering, and regulating user-generated content on digital ecosystems. It plays a crucial role in fostering a safe and positive user experience by removing or restricting content that violates community guidelines, is harmful, or could offend users. An effective moderation system is designed to strike a delicate balance…
5 minutes

Prevent unwanted content from reaching your platform

Speak to one of our experts and learn about using AI to protect your platform
Talk to an expert