ChekMarc is a free global social platform where members help each other achieve their goals by connecting with people with shared interests and expertise. It is not a social media platform. ChekMarc is a global community where meaningful connections between people empower members to help each other achieve their goals in a more secures, private, positive, and meaningful way. The kindness of members in helping each other is fundamental to ChekMarc’s community. The platform has recently secured $3Mn seed funding and is available in 35+ languages across the globe.
Marc Kaplan, Co-Founder & CEO – ChekMarc is a visionary person who began the ChekMarc journey with a vision for a free, positive, and uplifting community where people could connect and drive change. He is beyond excited and energized to see his vision come to fruition.
Marc has often commented that he wished ChekMarc existed before the business being launched because he would have benefited immensely from other experts in the field. He will most surely have Explorer requests, as he knows the power of tapping into the right expertise and knowledge. Marc is also looking forward to giving back to the community and act as a Catalyst in areas of professional development, travel advice, and other expert areas that allow him to draw on his own experiences.
Before founding ChekMarc, Marc was a Partner at Deloitte where he held several executive roles, including P&L responsibility for a large business, Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer for one of the four business areas of Deloitte, and was a member of one of the firm’s Board subcommittees. Over the course of his career at Deloitte and before, Marc has a track record of leading, growing, and transforming businesses.
During an email interaction with Marc, we got to know how ChekMarc is helping people to interact and learn new things, here are some glimpses of the same…
1. ChekMarc is leading to a new era of social engagement and consciousness which is changing the way people are interacting digitally. How is ChekMarc doing this?
Vrinda and I started with an idea and a dream to be able to connect people all around the world so that they could help each other achieve things in life, address issues or challenges they had, and learn from each other. So our focus has always been to have a purpose-driven platform that is uniquely focused on improving lives. People are connecting about so many different topics, including parenting issues with their children, breaking out of a career rut and pivoting into something more exciting, leading a more balanced and healthy emotional and physical life, how to stay motivated and energized during the pandemic, being a male single parent, tips for traveling during the pandemic, and so much more.
Our focus is 100% on making these interactions positive. And unfortunately, this is a big change from what most people experience today when they go online. The amount of people who lose personal relationships because of online experiences is staggering. The polarization and divisiveness from many current online platforms are incredibly damaging to society. And these platforms have become so powerful that they are difficult to regulate. ChekMarc brings a counterbalance to these platforms and provides an alternative experience people can have online that is focused on doing good for one another in a positive way.
2. What is the solution offered by ChekMarc to respond to the market’s frustration around existing social media platforms?
We decided at the very beginning that the most important priority for us was to provide the best possible member experience. So many social platforms today use unethical technology, invade people’s online privacy, spread misinformation, and enable cyberbullying and negativity. We designed our platform to minimize that.
On ChekMarc people can interact 1:1 or in Communities. The purpose of both is to give and get guidance around goals people have, problems they face, and questions people have. While many of us seek guidance from family, friends, and colleagues, it is often not enough and ChekMarc is there to help you when you need more. It is safe, private, positive, and free. People are helping each other because they want to. It is not a place to make money. And it is global, available in more than 35 languages.
We made decisions in the workflow that support and reinforce our values. And we drove these decisions throughout every aspect of ChekMarc. The first thing you will notice is that there are no advertisements on the website or app. Everything you see is for you and to maximize your experience. We never once had to debate how to carve up the real estate on the page to enable ads. And we have zero interest or focus on exploiting your personal information for our economic gain like the other major social platforms do today. You and your online history, preferences, and activities are not examined by us or shared with anyone.
We do use content moderation to help maintain a positive community. We do this unapologetically because we know how important it is to have a respectful community. It’s not difficult. All people need to do is treat each other with respect.
We also believe that a big source of bullying, negativity, and misinformation online is because people can hide behind a fake name. We provide everyone the ability to have their identity verified because we believe that the more people who are verified the more trusted the community will become.
There is a lot more we do to create an environment that is uniquely different from the challenges of today’s social media platforms but it all comes down to our values. Simply put, we put the member first. We focus on goodness. And we are committed to maintaining this as our core belief.
3. In the social media market today, there is rampant negativity & cyber-bullying as well as fake/misinformation; how does ChekMarc address this.
We take these issues very seriously and it is sad to see how much of this is on other platforms today. As I said earlier, we employ content moderation to catch as much of this as possible. We also have no issues removing people from the platform who violate the community guidelines. Removing someone from our platform who bullies others or who actively promotes misinformation will not require us to offload this to a 3rd party governing board as one platform has done or to go through months of debates like other platforms. The fairly simple answer for us.
We also have a very focused purpose for our community and it does not lend itself as easily to some of the challenges the other platforms face. Those platforms also do a lot of good for the world but because of their core offering, they are susceptible to a lot of challenges and they have addressed them unevenly.
We of course will have our own learnings. But our commitment to our members is to learn quickly how to address issues and to stay steadfast to our core principles.
4. Please shed some light on the new features and the idea behind introducing these features so early after the launch of ChekMarc.
Great question. When we launched ChekMarc in February it was focused on helping people make 1:1 connections to get and give guidance. We always knew we wanted to offer Communities and add some of the other features that we added in our most recent release. But at the same time, we wanted to get something out there to learn from and to get feedback to make sure where we were heading is what people wanted.
So in many ways, our first launch was really a beta launch. We did almost no marketing of the platform. During the first six weeks, we made a tremendous amount of improvements to the platform and then solidified our path forward. We will remain highly focused on getting feedback from our community members. We encourage people to provide us feedback through the site or contact us separately to share ideas. Much of what we built was direct input along the way from the community. So signup, experience ChekMarc and let us know what you think. Your feedback matters to us and it influences the decisions we make.
5. Please elaborate on the active and passive technology support in dealing with content moderation and identity verification on the platform.
Both of these have an active component that uses AI and other technology. Both also focus heavily on protecting your information and maintaining privacy. As am sure you know, machine learning solutions improve over time but the solutions we use are already very very good.
In terms of content moderation, we also ask our community to self-regulate. If something does not seem right, flag it and we will take a look at it. Human beings are not perfect people. None of us are. We just ask that when you are on ChekMarc you treat each other with respect and help support a positive experience for yourself and others!
6. Anything you would like to add.
I really appreciate the opportunity to chat about ChekMarc. The only thing I would add is that while we have created a very unique and different social platform that addresses many of the needs of society, our ability to scale it is in your hands. We are still in the early stages. Please signup, experience it for yourself, and let others know about it. Our ability to provide a counterbalance to other platforms is dependent on you participating on our platform!
Oh, and follow us on social so you can interact with us and see what we are up to! We are @chekmarcunites on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, and YouTube!