October 20, 2023
Comprehensive research to equip Ofcom with a deep understanding of online content accessibility via search services, informing online safety guidance
Ofcom set out to investigate the prevalence and accessibility of online content offering prohibited items or articles via search services like Google and Bing. This initiative involved assessing risks and identifying content that might violate regulations.
We adopted a systematic four-phase approach to tackle this challenge. We conducted a rapid literature review, mapped search service products, functionality, and features, gathered thousands of URLs, and scored these URLs against specific criteria. Our result analysis and scoring process allowed us to identify potential violations.
Our research equipped Ofcom with a comprehensive understanding of online content accessibility via search services. By identifying potential violations and assessing risk areas, we contributed to Ofcom’s role as the UK’s online safety regulator. Our findings informed the development of Codes of Practice and Guidance, enhancing online safety.
Through extensive desk research, use case development and stakeholder engagement, we recommended four areas of focus for the EHRC’s Strategic Plan relating to AI and equality and human rights.
Empowering DSIT to assess the Online Safety Bill’s effectiveness with a flexible M&E framework informed by robust research
Researching accreditation approaches across the technology sector to develop recommendations for a tailored accreditation process for the online safety tech industry
Crafting a comprehensive Interactive Services (IS) Model to provide Ofcom with a common framework for understanding user journeys and platform workflows
Developing a ‘minimum-viable product’ for a standards framework to assess online safety compliance solutions
Through mixed methods user research we mapped the prevalence and impact of OVAWG, identified key dynamics characterising how these harms occur, and categorised 18 harm types.
Researched innovative design approaches that can support the safety of women and girls on online platforms and services.