Women of color are warning about the potential dangers of artificial intelligence. It’s a concern they have been sharing for years and one that is now being highlighted by Rolling Stone.
Although AI has helped further several technological advancements, it has also come to carry several biases and harmful consequences. Specifically as it interacts with information regarding marginalized groups. Rolling Stone profiled several trailblazing women in the AI space including two Black women – Timnit Gebru, and Joy Buolamwini. They have extensive experience working in tech and even worked on the first iteration of what we know now as artificial intelligence software. They have also been calling for proper regulation around the use of AI and how its inherent biases are affecting marginalized communities as well as the rest of the world.
Gebru published a paper on the matter during AI’s earlier days.
“The training data has been shown to have problematic characteristics resulting in models that encode stereotypical and derogatory associations along gender, race, ethnicity, and disability status,” the paper reads. “White supremacist and misogynistic, ageist, etc., views are overrepresented in the training data, not only exceeding their prevalence in the general population but also setting up models trained on these datasets to further amplify biases and harms.”
Fixing The Drain
Artificial intelligence is permeating every facet of modern life. It is being used for educational purposes, in medical institutions, and even the most minute interactions on social media apps. These women are advocating for regulations that will ensure AI software is used responsibly. These regulations will bring nuance to the services aided by AI.
As Rolling Stone concluded in their report, “There are a few things they all want us to know: AI is not magic. LLMs are not sentient beings, and they won’t become sentient. And the problems with these technologies aren’t abstractions — they’re here now and we need to take them seriously today.”
AI researcher, Joy Buolamwini added that people’s lives are at stake.
“But not because of some super intelligent system,” Buolamwini said “But because of an over-reliance on technical systems. I want people to understand that the harms are real and that they’re present.”