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Search Results: Racial Bias?

on Thursday, Feb. 7th

It’s already been shown in a 2003 study published by the National Bearu of Economic Research that having a “black” name will affect whether or not you get a call back when applying for a job. But now it appears that bias may also appear when a person’s name is searched on Google.

Harvard Professor Latanya Sweeney brought the issue to light when she Googled her own name and saw an ad hinting that she had been arrested.  She set out to investigate whether “black names” more frequently turned up results indicating a criminal record than others.

In her study, Sweeney wrote, “…racism can result, even if not intentional, and that online activity may be so ubiquitous and intimately entwined with technology design that technologists may now have to think about societal consequences like structural racism in the technology they design.”

Read the full story here.

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