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Navigating Trust and Safety: A Guide to the Best Learning Materials

Trust and Safety professionals play a major role in creating secure, welcoming online environments. To excel in this field, it’s essential to have access to high-quality learning materials that cover a wide range of topics, from content moderation to cybersecurity. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best resources available for individuals looking to deepen their knowledge in Trust and Safety.

Online Courses and Certifications

Online learning platforms like Coursera and edX offer plenty of courses dedicated to Trust and Safety. These courses cover a broad spectrum of topics, including cybersecurity, privacy, digital forensics, and ethical considerations in online spaces. Notable courses include “Cybersecurity Fundamentals” and “Ethics and Law in Data and Analytics.”

Trust & Safety Guides and Documentation

Major tech companies, including Google and Twitter, maintain comprehensive Trust & Safety Centers. These resources provide detailed guidelines, best practices, and insights into how these companies manage user trust and safety on their platforms. They often include whitepapers, case studies, and policy documents, making them invaluable references for professionals in the field.

Trust and Safety Books

A major book on trust and safety is Custodians of the Internet by Tarleton Gillespie because it summarize the most common pratices and the authors gives recommandations for platforms to improve their safety. This book is a fundation of knowledge for trust and safety. 

Another book worth reading on Trust and Safety is Behind The Screen by Sarah T. Roberts because it offers the first extensive ethnographic study of the commercial content moderation industry. This revealing investigation of the people “behind the screen” offers insights into not only the reality of our commercial internet but the future of globalized labor in the digital age.

Podcasts, Newsletter and Webinars

Podcasts like “The Trust & Safety in Numbers Podcast” hosted by Sift are an excellent way to stay updated with the latest trends and best practices in the trust and safety space. Other podcast platform like Regulate Tech, Tech Policy Podcast also have a large amount of subject covered.

Many newsletters are available and offer so much accessible knowledge and up to date information about trust and safety (Everything in Moderation, Platformer, Tech Policy Press). Another way to keep up with Trust and Safety is to set up keyword alerts for technology news outlets (Wired, The Verge, Tech Crunch, etc.), or consult peer-reviewed research publications such as The Journal of Online Trust & Safety.

Similarly, webinars from reputable organizations and industry experts provide valuable insights and often facilitate discussions on critical topics.

The Trust and Safety Professional Association has created a space on their website called the Trust and Safety Library used to collect articles, blog posts, journal articles, lectures, podcasts, and websites that trust and safety professionals may find useful in developing policies, supporting moderators, building systems to detect violations, and generally deepening their practice.

Cybersecurity and Privacy Resources

Understanding cybersecurity and privacy is fundamental to trust and safety. Resources from organizations like OWASP and the Electronic Frontier Foundation offer comprehensive guides, articles, and tools to help professionals stay informed and up-to-date with the latest security practices.

Networking and Communities

Participating in online forums (for instance follow subject matter experts on Twitter) and communities dedicated to trust and safety allows professionals to engage in discussions, share experiences, and learn from peers. Platforms like Reddit’s r/trustandsafety provide a space for professionals to connect and exchange insights. LinkedIn is also a great tool for reaching out to people who are doing the work and request time to chat to learn more about their day-to-day responsibilities, how they got into their role, and any advice they might be able to offer to support your transition.

Conferences and Workshops

Attending trust and safety conferences and workshops provides an opportunity to hear from industry experts, gain practical insights, and network with professionals in the field. These events often feature panel discussions, case studies, and workshops focused on current challenges and emerging trends.

Conclusion

In the dynamic and rapidly evolving world of online platforms and services, trust and safety are of paramount importance. Professionals in this field must stay informed about the latest trends, technologies, and best practices. By leveraging a diverse range of learning materials, from online courses to podcasts and community engagement, individuals can deepen their expertise and contribute to creating safer, more trustworthy online environments for users worldwide.

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