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In Conversation With MemeChat CTO Ujjawal Panchal

In Conversation With MemeChat CTO Ujjawal Panchal

  • Attention mechanism lies at the heart of AMY.

Internet memes are the defining cultural phenomenon of the century. What started as a fun way of communicating has taken a serious turn with even big corporations working memes into their marketing and advertising strategies. The movement has also created a niche job market for ‘meme makers’.

MemeChat, one of the most popular homegrown social media networking apps, is entirely modelled around the ‘meme culture’. The app has more than 750k+ monthly active users (2 million downloads) and over 6 million memes. MemeChat has also worked with top Indian OTT platforms like ALT Balaji, Hotstar, and Amazon Prime.

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Analytics India Magazine caught up with Ujjawal K. Panchal, CTO, MemeChat to understand what goes into the making of a new age social networking app.

Excerpts:

AIM: What’s MemeChat’s market differentiator?

Ujjawal Panchal: MemeChat app is a social media app for Memes. It is the ultimate hub for meme creation, viewing, sharing and meme influencers. Memes are here to stay, and one day it is going to be an industry in itself. 

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MemeChat is extremely community-driven. A lot of our innovative features, even machine learning ones, have originated from our community. We have a very good communication channel with our community for easy issue resolution. We also collaborate with various well-known organisations for their viral marketing campaigns and have experienced extremely better results with our marketing campaigns as compared to our competitors. This, along with our technological expertise, sets us apart from our competition.

Several internal features help Meme Chat stand out, including:

  • Search Engine: Ability to search any memes using Optical Character Recognition and context detection.
  •  Meme Face: The ability to swap faces 
  •  AMY: Automated Meme Generator

AIM: Tell us about MemeChat’s tech stack.

Ujjawal Panchal: MemeChat uses a fairly diverse tech stack. The current in-production tech stack at MemeChat consists mainly of open-source languages such as Python, Java, Swift, PHP, Javascript, HTML, CSS. We also use a variety of cloud services from a few select cloud providers. Due to the need for rapid scaling and a large amount of traffic that needs to be managed, most of these solutions are serverless microservices built on top of Docker containers. 

AIM: What is AMY?

Ujjawal Panchal: AMY, short for Automated Memes for You, is our machine learning-based meme generator that can make memes in a matter of seconds. Attention mechanism lies at the heart of AMY. It models long-range dependencies present in instructed data. After a thorough investigation, we found these dependencies are hidden beneath what we conceptualise as ‘humour’. Using the combination of several techniques such as CNN, Bilinear Pooling, Compact Generalized NLNN, etc, Meme Chat was able to manage non-local dependencies in very high dimensional observations (images and captions) and train generative models producing complete and humorous images and captions for memes. 

AIM: How do you ensure privacy and security on your platform?

Ujjawal Panchal: The security and privacy of the user and their data are of prime importance to us. To make sure users safely enjoy the experience, we comply with strong security standards and use strong and proven encryption methods in our app. Ethical use of user’s data is important, and we make sure the data associated with users are rigorously encrypted when stored and are not visible, even to our services.

AIM: Tell us about your content moderation practises.

Ujjawal Panchal: Our platform has a strong content moderation in place. Since we collaborate with well-known organisations, the members create memes for the marketing campaigns of these organisations and are paid on the basis of the performance of the meme. To maintain the appropriateness and quality of content on our platform, we ensure every meme uploaded for clients is approved first-hand by our meme connoisseurs and moderators. Any reports made of unsafe and inappropriate content posted on the platform are taken seriously and reviewed by our moderators within a few minutes. 

AIM: What is the impact of machine learning on social media? 

Ujjawal Panchal: Machine Learning has tremendous potential to be used in social media applications. Meme Chat, through its services such as AMY, Meme Face AI, and AI-powered meme search engine have experienced this first hand. We have ventured into relatively lesser-known subjects like “AI for humour” and “AI for creativity” using machine learning. Providing cutting-edge and strong research-based solutions really enhances the experience of users and how they interact with memes and the community at large in the new hyper digitalized world.

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