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Could AI make global inequality worse?

Although AI technologies are heralded as groundbreaking, scientists caution that they run the risk of reproducing prejudices and inequalities that already exist in our society.

Qatar’s capital, Doha Artificial intelligence (AI) was the buzzword of the day at one of the biggest technological conferences in the world, whether it was spoken on the main stage, on side panels, or at the numerous flashy, tall company booths.

Web Summit, which took place in Doha for the first time in the Middle East and ended on Thursday, brought together business executives, investors, and entrepreneurs from all over the world to discuss the potential of artificial intelligence.

Experts are becoming increasingly concerned that new technologies may worsen the global disparities that now exist in addition to the excitement surrounding them.

According to Ayo Tometi, co-creator of the US-based antiracist movement Black Lives Matter, technologies, especially AI, carry the potential of magnifying preexisting biases.

We are witnessing, quite literally, the instillation of bias into the technologies utilised inside our societies. At the summit, Tometi stated, “We need to address these biases.”

The social justice activist gave the example of predictive policing techniques, which have been particularly detrimental to people of color, especially Black Americans.

Currently in use in the United States are two main categories of these tools, according to an article in the MIT Technology Review.

The first are tools that forecast crime hotspots based on location-based algorithms. The second set of tools are those that use demographic information, including age or gender, to forecast who would become involved in criminal activity.

However, Tometi stated that these technologies are a “very serious cause for concern, given that racism and anti-Back racism in the criminal justice system have not yet been addressed.”
It is believed that these technologies are neutral when they are distributed, but she claimed that is just untrue.

There have been instances where a botched facial scan has resulted in someone being imprisoned right now. Tometi persisted, “They just don’t recognize our features and don’t see our faces in the same way.”

“These technologies are normalizing a great deal of bias and discrimination based on stereotypes.”



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