Campaign initiated by D-ID and Spring ACT in collaboration with Microsoft and UN Women marks International Women’s Day
TEL AVIV, Israel and ZURICH, March 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — D-ID, a world leader in generative AI, and Spring ACT, an award-winning non-profit organization that leverages technology to eliminate global injustices, announced today a campaign to use Generative AI to strengthen global online support for victims of domestic violence. Leveraging D-ID’s text-to-video technology, Spring ACT will bring its untraceable online domestic violence chatbot Sophia.chat, to life by animating the photorealistic avatar to make it more relatable and accessible. This will enable victims from anywhere in the world to interact with the talking chatbot in several languages including English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Swahili and Chinese Mandarin. Through its Philanthropies program, Microsoft is supporting the Sophia campaign, which leverages Microsoft Azure AI’s text-to-speech capabilities and Azure AI cloud infrastructure.
“One in three women worldwide, approximately 736 million people, are subjected to physical or sexual violence in their lifetime, with over 50,000 women killed annually by their partners or family members,” said Adriana Quinones, Head, Human Rights and Development, UN Women, Geneva. “UN Women is inspired by this global collaboration/initiative created to combat the worldwide shortage of governmental and NGO resources and to rectify the lack of knowledge and trust on the part of the victim. We are confident that the Sophia chatbot will reach and help more survivors globally.”
The Sophia chatbot assists victims of domestic violence 24/7, no matter where they are located and in strict confidentiality to feel safe and confident enough to take the first steps to get help. The system uniquely enables complete anonymity by leaving no digital trace for abusers to discover. Based on their specific needs, ‘Sophia’ helps victims to gather potential evidence and seek help in every country in the world. Since its launch in December 2021, more than 15,000 people have chatted with Sophia.
“We developed Sophia to empower survivors of domestic violence to more easily reach out for help and take action,” said Rhiana Spring, CEO at Spring ACT. “We are humbled to be able to now make this service more accessible for survivors no matter their literacy level by animating Sophia with D-ID.“
“We are proud to be collaborating with Spring ACT to help Sophia reach more victims of domestic violence more effectively,” said Shiran Mlamdovsky Somech, social tech entrepreneur and leading Impact at D-ID. “Applying technology to improve life for vulnerable populations is at the core of D-ID’s values. Sophia is an excellent example of how generative AI can massively impact society for the better.”
“At Microsoft, we believe technology is a powerful force for good and everyone should have access to knowledge and benefit from its use,” said Andrew Reid, Global Partner Solutions Director, Microsoft Switzerland. “Domestic violence is a global issue which crosses countries and languages. Leveraging our technology to empower and support survivors of domestic violence demonstrates the strength and power of collaboration and community. We are very pleased to be behind this important initiative together with Spring ACT and D-ID.“
D-ID’s generative AI technology elevates learning and development, sales, and marketing video content. Their platform uses deep learning models to enable creators to generate digital people and photorealistic digital presenters from text, dramatically reducing the cost and hassle of video production at scale. D-ID was established in 2017 as part of the Microsoft for Startups program, and is backed by tier 1 VCs. Over 110 million videos have been created using their technology. D-ID’s solution is available through a self-service Creative Reality™ Studio, an online Chat service and an API, and plug-ins. D-ID unleashed the viral sensation Deep Nostalgia, the first generative AI tool to go viral, in 2020. It took over the internet for months, as millions of people used it to bring photos of ancestors and historic figures to life. Customers include Fortune 500 companies such as Warner Bros, Mondelēz, leading e-learning platforms, social media platforms, and content creators of all sorts. D-ID’s media kit can be found here.
About Spring ACT
Spring ACT is an international non-profit organization with headquarters in Switzerland and founded in December 2021. Its aim is to empower people through innovative technologies to take action and help eliminate global social injustices. The organization is active in the field of human rights and technology and is currently running two projects: Sophia and Dots, a legal aid app that will connect people in need with the right organizations to help them. Their work has been recognised with the Swiss Future Prize by the President of Switzerland, the Prize for Innovation in Global Security by GCSP, the Global Impact Award by Zendesk, the Female Founder Newcomer Award by Venturepole and was recognized by MIT as a semifinalist in their global challenge Solve. Spring ACT partners with both private and public entities, such as the Swiss Government, Microsoft, Zendesk, the London School of Economics and local domestic violence organizations. It is also supported by the Conference of Cantonal Directors of Social Affairs within the framework of the Swiss Conference on Victim Assistance (SVK – OHG) and by the umbrella organization of women’s shelters Switzerland (DAO). For more information springact.org
About Shiran Mlamdovsky Somech
Shiran Mlamdovsky Somech is a social tech entrepreneur who develops strategic partnerships between start-ups, non-profits, governments, and multinational corporations. She is the founder of Listen to My Voice, an AI-based media campaign against domestic violence that was featured by the UN and NATO and achieved wide international recognition and multiple awards. Currently, she is leading new social tech projects and providing impact advisory services in the tech industry.
Passionate about female entrepreneurship and gender equality, Shiran has years of experience helping women at risk and female entrepreneurs, creating dedicated initiatives to support their vocational success. She holds an EMBA from the Kellogg School of Management, NorthWestern University.