I work as a “teacher of the Yellow River” in a large factory: I look at 4000 yellow storm pictures every day and cry for dismissal

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Text / micro story editing department
Source: Micro story (ID: xianweigushi)
Original title: I work as a “yellow teacher” in a large factory: watching 4000 yellow storm pictures every day, high incidence of depression, crying for dismissal
There’s a group of people whose job is to block what you can’t see on the Internet.
They are “yellow teachers”, also known as network auditors.
Many people think that the teacher is very relaxed and cool, and only need to see the updated content of the platform every day. But in fact, when the Yellow River teachers see the contents of these problems, all they can do is to pass and delete them.
Gradually exposed in the next yellow, bloody mentality. However, these people who are responsible for cleaning up the Internet spam information are also the high-risk group of depression.
Not only do they need 996 overtime and low wages, but no one can guarantee their mental health.
There was a movie about Facebook auditors, the cleaners. One of the censors in the film was responsible for censoring self mutilation videos. After watching countless self abuse videos, he hanged himself at home.
No one cares about their mental health.
This issue of micro story is about a group of “yellow masters”
Some of them are overseas returnees with master’s degree. They enter today’s headlines with their professional dreams and become “auditors”. However, due to difficulties in promotion and work depression, they eventually go to a start-up company with a salary cut;
Some people once read more than 4000 pornographic information a day and called their leaders at night crying to resign;
Some people used to be microblog auditors, responsible for controlling negative public opinion for stars, but they were also attacked by the Internet, and finally became psychological counselors;
There are also people who are reviewers of the Internet platform. In addition to the text, they also deal with the pornographic information that users use to evade the audit mechanism;
Here is a true story about them:
A full year is considered as a senior employee
Monthly salary 5000 yuan, unable to raise salary, difficult to change jobs
Xiaolu’s front page user operation: 25 years old
This year, I accepted a new job with reduced pay and overtime just to escape the job of “content auditor”.
In Internet companies, content auditing and telemarketing are called the two most unpromising jobs. Once you choose, a good hand is broken.
In 2017, I graduated from a university in the UK and joined an Internet company to do business. This company is a well-known large factory, the school recruitment is very “card degree”, without 985 background, it is difficult to go to the final interview.
There are more than ten interns in my group. All of them graduated from 985 universities, such as Fudan University, Shanghai Jiaotong University and Wuhan University. There are also many overseas returnees with overseas study background.
We have two teams: the preliminary review team (contracted by the second tier city subsidiaries and outsourcing companies); and the operation team, which is responsible for the first tier cities and review, is my team.
The review team will manually label the “safe” content assessed by the preliminary review team as “excellent”, “good” and “general”. Different labels determine the exposure recommendation level of the content, which directly affects the content data.
According to the company’s regulations, the content uploaded by users should be reviewed within 2 hours, and all new content should be reviewed every day.
In order to ensure that the content of the audit “clear day”, the preliminary review team uses “three shifts”, so that there are 24-hour audit. Their KPI is how many items are reviewed every day and how accurate they are.
The first time I heard this KPI, I was surprised. It was a tool maker!
Review is much easier. However, in order to improve our efficiency, the supervisor asked the programmer to write an “alarm device”. As long as there is any content that has not been reviewed over time, the system will automatically alarm.
Usually, when we come back from lunch, the office is filled with alarms.
We often ridicule ourselves as “artificial” in “artificial intelligence”. Once there is audit error, we become “artificial intelligence disability”.
This job looks simple and easy to do. But it can’t keep people; it’s very exhausting.
Still photo of documentary “network censor”
We have a lot of communication with the team.
For them, being able to work in the company for one year is a senior employee. In addition to working machinery, they also have to deal with more pornographic, violent and abusive contents, which is very harmful to the spirit.
The salary of the preliminary examination team is about 5000 yuan per month, and there is basically no room for higher salary increase.
This job can not bring much value to the resume, let alone job hopping, so it has become the “cannon fodder” of the Internet.
My job is just to train machines to audit and improve accuracy. The company plans to replace manual audit with machine audit in the future. Each meeting, the program team will quantify the progress of machine training.
Every time I see the increase in the accuracy of those machine audit data, I feel that my future career path is being blocked.
Last year, tiktok’s audit team was cut a lot, which made me feel the crisis.
After being banned by the United States, the domestic minority language audit team has been optimized on a large scale. At that time, these people were all spoiled children of famous schools. After one year’s audit work, their original language advantage was weakened. After layoffs, they could only continue to look for audit related work.
At 35, the workplace crisis is just around the corner.
Still photo of documentary “network censor”
When I realized that, I decided to leave.
At that time, my salary was about 14K, but when I went to interview other posts, the background of famous schools and large factories was not easy to use. The outspoken interviewer will tell me directly, “the ability is insufficient to support the post.”.
I had to lower my salary and find a more tiring job at a small start-up that required overtime. But I don’t regret, at least in this job, I’m no longer an emotionless auditing machine.
Watch the Yellow chart at night and cry
The company set up “vent fund” in order to “coax” everyone
Young Z, female, 27, is the content operation director of a certain platform
Most of the users of our platform are sinking the market, and most of them are not senior high school students.
In recent years, fraud cases involving the elderly as victims have occurred frequently, and hundreds of thousands of elderly people on our platform get and share content here every day.

This also requires us to be more strict in the control of content, and we are worried about the damage of users’ property caused by bad content.
I am the content director, but managing the audit team and assisting the technical team to improve the quality of content is also part of my job.
There are 15 people in our team, most of them are Post-97. There is no “front row” among auditors. The job is boring, repetitive and low paid, and almost no one can stick to it for a year.
Every time someone leaves, we go to the school to recruit interns, or new graduates to fill the vacancy – there is no technical threshold.
Our platform updates tens of thousands of content every day, including text, video and pictures. Some of them are uploaded by users and captured by our internal crawlers, involving thousands of items that need to be audited.
We need to manually label “shield”, “hide” and “recommend” and delete the advertising words manually.
Those content (involving violence, money, sex, exaggeration) often attract traffic and earn personal income. Therefore, teams (commonly known as “number making companies”) often change accounts and upload pornographic content in batches.
Words are best handled. We have built a “sensitive lexicon” internally, and negative words will directly become “XX”.
Once the words that are easy to tread on the line appear in the title or article, the system will automatically block them, and they can only be released after the auditor reviews them.
This is a picture that I often come into contact with. It is not a pornographic storm, but I have to see several pictures every day
In order to evade the audit, some people will upload the generated pictures of small yellow characters, or add letters and numbers before sensitive words to prevent them from being recognized.
For small companies, it’s difficult to audit pictures and videos. I have encountered a batch of videos, in the last five seconds of the broadcast of false advertising, let the technology add the “five seconds” function.
The devil is one foot high and the road is ten feet high.
Within a few days, the user scrambled the video frames and added ads (ads appeared randomly). In addition, there are a lot of yellow content, and finally have to continue to use manual audit.
This kind of work often makes the auditor self doubt, and thinks that the purpose of all these years of education is to do this work? What is the value of such a job to me?
I’m afraid to get a call late at night. Most of the night’s phone calls were my subordinates’ emotional breakdown, their resignation, and even their suicide because they felt that their life was meaningless.
If this kind of emotion is not handled properly, the employee may resign.
This happened to our company last year. After an auditor resigned, the girl with whom the company had a good relationship also said that she suffered from depression because of the job.
Still photo of documentary “network censor”
At that time, the supervisor criticized the other party’s psychological vulnerability, resulting in more auditors leaving. For a while, the negative content of overload appeared on the platform, and the people in the operation group were temporarily called up to share the “audit” work.
After a few days, everyone was a little abnormal. Every day, they were nagging, negative, and felt that the work was meaningless. They even said, “if we need to review again, we will leave the company collectively.”.
Still photo of documentary “network censor”
Forced by the pressure, the company quickly recruited auditors, but also found a psychological consultant, and allocated funds to the audit team as “vent fund”.
So whenever I get a late night crash call, I have to be patient with them.
For example, “our work makes the elderly not be cheated and valuable”. In addition, we often share users’ praise, increase work confidence and promise to apply for more bonus in the group.
But why don’t I think this job doesn’t mean much?
I feel very contradictory. On the one hand, I want to keep them. After all, I don’t have to be temporarily transferred to the front-line audit. On the other hand, I feel very self reproach. In the face of young people who believe in me for one reason or another, I draw big cakes of “promotion and salary increase” one after another.
This pie, it may never come true.
Fed up with 4000 negative microblogs a day
Auditors have no technical content, most of them are fresh students
Ji Lin, 26, a former microblog content auditor
I used to be a microblog content auditor. At my busiest time, I read more than 4000 microblogs a day.
For content auditing, the content of pictures is relatively easy to audit. By reporting statements or directly judging whether the content of the picture is indecent, it can be deleted, and the publisher will be punished accordingly: prohibition or seal.
My colleagues come from all walks of life, including urban management, who was responsible for public security in Tiananmen Square, as well as high-quality students and fresh students from the University of political science and law.
The most important thing in content auditing is that EQ should be high. You should not only know how to maintain the relationship, but also have the bottom line and principles. You can’t help anyone who asks for your help.
When I was just doing the audit, I could find a lot of fun every day and meet many wonderful people.
But after doing it for a long time and receiving more negative and pornographic information, I feel more and more bored. This occupation does not need technical ability at all, as long as mechanical audit, judgment can be.
So it’s hard for young people who have a little bit of a dream to keep going.
Most of these auditors are male. It’s easy to get an impression of the psychological state by looking at the pictures of pornographic violence, which makes people have no desire in their daily life.
Even for a period of time, I felt depressed because I had read too much negative information. How can there be so many methods of swearing in the society? There are dirty and abnormal people everywhere.
If I didn’t work as an auditor, I didn’t know there were so many wonderful people in the society.
Some people specialize in selling “original flavor”, some are pedophiles and underwear addicts, and some people are looking for other people’s second-hand underwear on idle fish, which are very common things.
Sometimes there are some fishing content of “selling dog meat with sheep’s head”. For example, some people will post their own self portraits to attract people to ask if she sells “private house” or even sell “yourself” offline.
For them, whether it’s microblogging, leisure fish, or other social channels, are just one of the ways to show and sell themselves, and they may encounter them everywhere.
Some time ago, it was exposed that the wives of Pan Weibo and Guo Fucheng had actually taken the course of “marrying a rich family”.
In fact, by looking at their microblogs and wechat content, it is easy to find that they are willing to share their photos and lives, attracting stars and local tyrants to send private messages to them.

This kind of behavior of looking at photos to check the beauty of a girl is called “selecting concubines” internally. Many vanity Internet celebrities are so seduced. Although we can’t read the user’s private message, we can still see it in the report content.
Our company has developed a program to screen the Yellow pictures, which belongs to the network supervision department of the video department. A few frames of flesh color in the video will be screened out for the first time.
Ironically, this mechanism often filters out images of Garfield – many Garfield cats are also flesh colored. At this point, we need to manually judge Garfield or pornographic pictures.
Garfield
Most of the vertical content is independently audited by each other. For example, some colleagues are responsible for the service of big V and focus on the maintenance of star reports.
If the stars have any problems, they can directly find the person in charge of the microblog. At the same time, they also have the corresponding quota for deleting posts. They can conduct hot search, downgrade, comment processing, etc.
All the information we receive has a reason for reporting. For example, there are all kinds of obscene, pornographic and other disputes.
Even some men revenge their ex girlfriend after breaking up and send her naked photos directly on the platform. The backstage feels pitiful and sympathizes with them and will delete them for her.
Still photo of documentary “network censor”
This job is too negative energy. It was depressing for a time.
So I didn’t do it for a long time. After about a year, I quit my job, got the qualification certificate of psychological counselor, and changed my profession to be a psychological consultant.
Instead of blocking negative content, I’d rather let people resolve their resentment and desire from the root.
Voice to text content should not be ignored
Once there’s something wrong with the platform, we’re done with our work
Li haicao, male, 27 year old entrepreneur
In 2015, I worked as an editor on an online platform, and occasionally assisted in safety review.
Our platform is open to the whole network registration, so it is inevitable that some users will publish illegal content. Most of the illegal content is advertising, pornography, gambling information, and a small amount of bloody and violent content.
Like “bisexual girls in New York, come out and have a chat?” “I sleep with my stepfather and blackmail him to buy me a car”
Our system will automatically intercept and delete the obvious illegal information, and the user account will be blocked if it is serious.
If the system determines that the author of a certain word or sentence is suspected of violating the rules, the system will highlight and enlarge this part of the content.
If there are only a few words, the auditor will help to revise them. But when it comes to the plot and the structure of the article, which needs to be greatly modified, the reviewer will call back the chapter and ask the author to revise it and review it.
If there are pictures in the article, then each picture system will be intercepted and let the reviewers make judgment. Although it is a writing app, there are fewer users who upload pictures, but there are still some pornographic pictures uploaded by malicious people.
The first time I saw a yellow picture, the system intercepted several pages of naked body parts.
At the beginning, I was a little embarrassed to see this kind of content, but after seeing more of it, I got sick at the sight of this kind of picture.
Nowadays, there are many ways for users to evade auditing.
A user uploaded a QQ group chat screenshot, in which a piece of information is converted from voice to text, and all the transformed words are modal particles, which are obviously pornographic.
At that time, I was very nervous and consulted with the leaders. But the leader felt that my nerves were too sensitive, so I insisted on my own opinion and deleted the picture.
The safety audit seems simple and easy, but if you let the bad information come out, the impact on the platform can be large or small. If it’s serious, we can’t even keep working.
But exposed to bad content for a long time, no one can stand it. Our colleagues in the audit department have to face this information eight hours a day on average.
Over time, it is inevitable to collapse. One of our female colleagues went to see psychological counseling after working for a few months.
Therefore, in order to reduce the psychological burden of the reviewers, people in the content department change their posts every week, and one person does the content security audit work for a week.
I’ve done it a few times, and I don’t want to touch it anymore.
This article does not represent the author’s position