Adding Friction, Adding Safety: How the Blind Community is Carefully Scaling

When we started Blind in 2013, we decided that the safety of the Blind community should be our highest priority, even if it means less aggressive growth. Firstly, we understood that requiring users to verify their employers was friction that would slow our growth. Even though our user numbers are doubling every year, we know the step our users take to verify their work email turns some people away.

We aren’t the first social network to choose friction. Executives from Jigsaw (Alphabet subsidiary) and Instagram have discussed it publicly.

Why Add Friction for Users on Blind?

Blind is largely community-moderated and that is, in part, because people are identified by their company. While users will continue to use Blind to hold their companies accountable, we find they also want to prevent confidential details, false information or inappropriate content from negatively impacting their company image. Having a company name attached to our users’ posts creates a level of accountability. Additionally, our users actively flag any posts that go against our Community Guidelines. Our users are proud of the supportive online community that they’ve built, and they want to protect it.

Additional Moderation Measures

We have machine help with moderation, as well. On the backend, we have a flagging system that automatically removes content based on carefully created algorithms. These algorithms are unique for each channel and our team is constantly ensuring that the algorithms are working as intended and making tweaks. Some channels are more problematic than others, which require us to take a more hands-on approach to moderation.

In the last year, we’ve made major changes to our security measures. We’ve doubled the size of our dedicated security team and invested in new engineering resources. We also rolled out account re-verification and scaled it up, which means all users will be asked to re-verify their accounts and update their employment status on a periodic basis.

It’s Not About Censorship

We aren’t trying to be “Big Brother” for the Blind community, and we don’t want to be. Blind is not about censorship, it’s about honesty and transparency. We only get involved when we need to, and when we do, our goal is to educate users on how to have constructive discussions. We see so many discussions about workplace issues where users offer one another productive suggestions. These conversations create positive change, and they are at the heart of the Blind community.

These Measures Enable Transparency

Because people are able to be honest without fear of judgment or embarrassment, people are sharing things like salary information and authentic interview tips, leveling the playing field for employees and promoting fairness. Blind’s mission is to encourage corporate transparency to break down professional barriers and provide professionals with the information they need to make informed decisions. We want Blind to be a safe place where people can be honest and discuss issues openly. We will continue to grow Blind in a way that helps our users.

We are moving beyond tech, growing in the finance, gaming, and entertainment industries, making transparency the standard.

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