Elwira Gliwska is a dietitian and public health specialist in Poland and a member of the EASO-Early Career Network. Elwira participated in the EASO Obesity Masterclasses in Annecy in July 2022 and the EASO-Early Career Network Winter School in Seville in December 2022.
Elwira Gliwska is working as part of an interdisciplinary team with Klaudia Baranska; a data analyst, and Michal Klos; a software engineer. These early career researchers based in Poland have taken a significant step toward making the online world a safer and more inclusive place by developing a machine learning model to detect weight and obesity stigma in online content.
Elwira, please tell us about your recent work and its significance to the field of obesity:
Our project was born out of a growing public health concern surrounding the mental well-being of vulnerable populations. In today’s world, social media is an integral part of everyday life, and it is nearly impossible to control the content that individuals are exposed to. One of the alarming trends on social media is the prevalence of weight and obesity stigma, often unnoticed by those affected.
To combat this issue, our team developed a website plugin designed to flag any content in social media that may contain weight or obesity stigma. Users can still view the content, but it is clearly marked as unhelpful or shaming. This innovative model relies on machine learning and was trained using a dataset originally intended for identifying hate speech and subsequently fine-tuned to recognise body and weight stigmatising phrases. The results have been highly efficient and would be readily implementable. Recognising the importance of maintaining social media hygiene and protecting vulnerable populations from the negative impacts of weight and obesity stigma, our team is determined to raise awareness and combat body image disturbances.
Our project received recognition in the form of an award at the SAS Hackathon 2023, signifying its value on the global stage. The project presentation from this competition can be viewed at: https://communities.sas.com/t5/SAS-Hacker-s-Hub/Body-hate-detection-for-social-media-safety-and-hygiene/ta-p/863764
Elwira, what are the next steps or future plans for this project?
Our next step is to further develop and implement the project. We are actively seeking collaboration with individuals interested in creating a better online world. By doing so, we hope to make a real impact and contribute to a more inclusive and understanding digital landscape.
If you are interested in collaborating or finding out more about this work, please contact Elwira Gliwska at: firstname.lastname@example.org
This infographic shows a series of statements and statistics:
- Did you know that…970 million people around the world struggle with some mental illness?
- Count to four…will be affected by a mental illness at some point in their lives
- 14.3 % of deaths worldwide, or approximately 8 million deaths each year, are attributable to mental disorders
- More connected but less in contact…
- Many robust scientific data confirmed that social media might negatively impact mental health. It could be also one of the factors affecting occurency of self harm and suicidal behavoirs. One of the greatest threat is body shaming and weight stigma
This infographic shows a software data flow model.
This infographic shows a series of statements about weight stigma and social media
- Weight and obesity stigma in social media…Sooner or later we will be Addicted to scrolling but to shy for posting
- “The health impact of imposed weight stigma on social media is of increasing public health concern and warrants further research and action”
- Depression – Mental health disorders – Low self-esteem – Disturbed body image