Reddit Buys Natural Language Processing Startup MeaningCloud to Boost Product & Advertising
Reddit has acquired natural language processing (NLP) startup MeaningCloud for an undisclosed price. MeaningCloud’s linguistic analytics and machine learning (ML) capabilities will be used to augment Reddit’s services, including its customer safety and advertising efforts, in tandem with what Reddit picked up in its recent acquisition of ML experiment platform startup Spell.
MeaningCloud’s platform is designed to scan and process raw text and unstructured content from social media and websites. The AI can then provide insight relevant to what the user is looking for. That could help Reddit improve search results for users, spot problematic posts more efficiently, and better target its marketing campaigns to those who would be interested. The seven-year-old startup’s team will join Reddit as part of the acquisition. MeaningCloud’s team will be part of several departments within the social media platform, specifically to support machine learning efforts.
“As geeks, working on Content Understanding as part of the fantastic Reddit’s machine learning team, around the largest internet corpus of conversational content, is a dream come true. There is no need to explain the excitement of our team about the new challenges we face as part of Reddit,” MeaningCloud CEO Jose C. Gonzalez explained in a blog post. “Time is the best judge of our actions. However, I’m sure about the great value that we will be contributing to Reddit in the coming years, configuring one of the leading organizations in the exploitation of NLP technologies, beyond the current hype around ML and Artificial Intelligence in general.
MeaningCloud is the latest example of Reddit’s interest in AI and machine learning. The company bought ML platform Spell not long ago, gaining access to Spell’s cloud-based method of conducting complex machine learning experiments without the power-hungry hardware required traditionally. MeaningCloud and Spell’s tech will support each other and could give Reddit users better, more personalized suggestions, especially through the Discover Tab Reddit installed on its app this year.
“MeaningCloud helps strengthen Reddit’s platform by helping our community get the relevant information they are looking for even faster,” Reddit vice president of data Jack Hanlon said. “With the addition of MeaningClound’s technology, we can continue our mission of providing simpler, richer and more relevant content to our users. We are thrilled to welcome the talented MeaningCloud team to Reddit.”