Because people share so much of their personal and professional lives on social platforms, these digital connections and interactions pose several cyber security risks. Everything from user comments to posts and even likes and shares offer a glimpse into private lives and to some extent even the minds of users. So, this information can be exploited in various ways by unscrupulous elements. This realization is what led the team of Soul Zhang Lu to incorporate various security features on the platform.
Soul, one of the most popular social platforms among China’s Gen Zers, unveiled its user-centric features in the “2023 Third Quarter Soul Ecological Security Report”. From real-time feedback mechanisms to stringent security protocols and from empowering users through knowledge to creating a user-curated content system, Soul is doing all of this and more in a bid to ensure user safety and well-being on the platform.
From the get-go Soul Zhang Lu worked with the understanding that certain types of connections would have to be kept off the platform to ensure the safety of users, namely those that redirect users away from the security of the app and onto pages that could have embedded security threats. This was and continues to be done in two ways:
- The platform does not allow monetary transactions, which not only redirect users to other pages but also get them to offer financial and personal information.
- Soul App has a system in place that leads to pop-up warning messages as soon as redirect intent is discovered. So no matter what the destination page, if a link in the message is meant to redirect users, the platform will make users aware of possible risks.
To further bolster user education and engagement, Soul App incorporates an anti-fraud question bank. This feature locks certain high-risk dialogue boxes. The users have control of just how far the protection goes as the dialogue boxes can be unlocked by correctly answering anti-fraud knowledge questions. Regular updates to the question bank allow the platform to stay ahead of emerging fraud tactics, and to provide users with valuable insights that enable them to identify and avoid potential threats.
The safety initiatives of Soul Zhang Lu are not just aimed at tackling online fraud, they are also meant to address negative online behaviors that users of social platforms are often subjected to. Soul App has zero tolerance for cyberbullying and online harassment. So, users have access to the “Message Box” feature at their disposal to stop the negativity before it turns into a problem.
Once again, users are in control as the feature asks the recipients of messages to decide if they were offended or felt threatened by certain texts. Depending on the response of the recipient, the sender of the message can be muted or banned from the platform.
The protection also extends to private chat scenarios as users can report uncivilized behaviors, which then could lead to functionality restrictions imposed on the sender of the message or a deduction in social etiquette points. This real-time feedback mechanism empowers users to actively contribute to the platform’s security and fosters a more respectful online community.
Soul Zhang Lu has also incorporated app features that are designed to prevent online harassment. The “Intelligent Filtering” feature enables users to stop messages that contain certain keywords. When the platform detects a message that has the filtered keywords, it automatically places them in a message box. This feature not only allows the users to control the type of messages they receive but also enables them to create a personalized communication space for themselves that is both safe and positive.
Another initiative that yields similar results albeit in a lighthearted manner is the “Rotten Tomato” feature. It works when interactions are in poor taste but not outright offensive, hence do not merit being reported. In such a scenario, an effective and funny way to handle the matter is to simply throw a rotten tomato at the sender.
This leads to the deduction of social etiquette points sending the clear message that the recipient did not like the tone or the context of the conversation. In 2023, the team of Soul Zhang Lu upgraded this feature to include guidance on how to use it appropriately along with proactive reminders to use it to foster positive communication on the platform.
Apart from these features, the platform also has a unique use-moderated and user-centric system that governs the content made available on the plaza. User-led committees and groups are put in charge of recommending content as well as enforcing rules to ensure a positive and friendly community environment. Furthermore, the platform engages users in jointly managing the overall ecosystem of the platform. This novel form of community arbitration and governance ensures that users have a direct involvement in the quality and tone of the content that they receive.
While these features work differently and are meant to achieve specific objectives, the one common factor is the amount of direct user engagement and the extent of control that they allow users to have. Simply put, Soul Zhang Lu gives app users the power to choose who they want to interact with, the kind of interaction they want to indulge in, the quality and type of content that is sent their way, and how they want to respond to unsavory interactions.