According to Techcrunch.com, Facebook reached a deal for between $23-$30 million for a London-based tech startup called Bloomsbury AI, which has a Natural Language Processing (NLP) technology to help computers answer human questions. Facebook is said to want the technology to help fight fake news and monitor content.
Bloomsbury AI not only has a leading NLP software, but also its CTO/Head of Research, Sebastian Riedel, co-founded and is an adviser to Factmata, another startup that has tools to fight fake news. Factmata recently raised $1 million to build an AI platform to stop the spread of biased, incorrect and misleading information on various media platforms and ad networks.
Factmata’s CEO and founder Dhruv Ghulati, a machine learning specialist, started the company following the dissemination of false information that influenced Brexit voters, as well as American voters in the 2016 presidential election.
Ghulati said the company would be based on “community-driven” AI that uses machine learning led by human beings who identify illicit or incorrect content. The company will target advertising, aggregation platforms (like Google and Facebook) and businesses that work with consumers, such as online publishers.
According to TheNextWeb.com, this is “easily” the largest UK acquisition this year. While far less than Google’s 2014 acquisition of DeepMind at $500 million, it’s also one of the most interesting deals of late for its potential. In addition to the Bloomsbury AI acquisition, Samsung opened a machine learning center in Cambridge, indicating that the UK is becoming an AI contender.