ChaCha apologizing for ‘inflammatory’ answers

Carmel-based ChaCha Search Inc., a question-and-answer service for mobile phone and online users, is apologizing for providing what it calls "inflammatory answers to questions asked about sensitive subjects."

The company issued a public apology Thursday after a report by online publication Gizmodo said ChaCha provided pro-life, racist and insensitive answers to some questions.    

"It was recently brought to our attention that ChaCha provided inflammatory answers to questions asked about sensitive subjects," the company said in a prepared statement. "We sincerely apologize for this incident. We are taking this issue seriously and are making every effort to provide answers which comply with our company policies."

The service relies on about 180,000 paid and unpaid "guides" to answer any question that a user might send in. Those guides typically tap a database to help them provide answers but sometimes answer the questions on their own.

"ChaCha is currently reviewing our database of nearly 2 billion questions and answers we have provided," the company said ."We are correcting answers which do not comply with our policies. In addition to cleansing our existing answers, we are implementing tighter policies and procedures. We are training all of our guides, support teams, and quality control teams to ensure the highest level of quality of our answers."

ChaCha was founded in 2006 by entrepreneur Scott Jones.

 

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