Call of Duty partners with Modulate to use AI to fight toxicity in voice chat
Call of Duty has long had problems with toxic chat on its voice channels, and Activision announced it is doing something about in a collaboration with Modulate.
Activision said it considered this to be a significant step forward in its ongoing battle against toxic and disruptive behavior within its voice chat feature. Activision said the AI-based Modulate’s ToxMod voice chat moderation system will debut with the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III on November 10.
It’s a big win for Modulate and its ToxMod technology, which identifies toxic speech, including hate speech, discriminatory language, and harassment in real-time — and then automatically deals out the consequences. This system will complement Call of Duty’s existing moderation efforts, which include text-based filtering across 14 languages and a robust in-game reporting system.
Michael Vance, CTO at Activision, emphasized the importance of creating a welcoming and fair environment for all players. In a statement, Vance said, “There’s no place for disruptive behavior or harassment in games ever. Tackling disruptive voice chat particularly has long been an extraordinary challenge across gaming. With this collaboration, we are now bringing Modulate’s state-of-the-art machine learning technology that can scale in real-time for a global level of enforcement.”
To ensure the effectiveness of the voice chat moderation system, an initial beta rollout will commence in North America on August 30 within the existing games, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II and Call of Duty: Warzone. This will be followed by a full worldwide release (excluding Asia) coinciding with the launch of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III. Initially available in English, support for additional languages will be added at a later date.
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Activision’s partnership with Modulate represents a significant advancement in trust and safety measures within the gaming industry. Mike Pappas, CEO at Modulate, said in a statement, “We’re enormously excited to team with Activision to push forward the cutting edge of trust and safety. This is a big step forward in supporting a player community the size and scale of Call of Duty, and further reinforces Activision’s ongoing commitment to lead in this effort.”
Call of Duty’s existing anti-toxicity moderation systems have taken action against over a million accounts found to have violated the Call of Duty Code of Conduct since the launch of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II. The implementation of updated text and username filtering technology has significantly improved the real-time rejection of harmful language. The company’s Ricochet tech has also fought cheating.