safiya umoja noble

safiya umoja noble.png

intro’d to Safiya via her (data & society) databite 109 on her book – algos of oppression

At 5:30PM ET this evening, we’ll be livestreaming Databite 109 with @safiyanoble. Watch here:

Original Tweet:

this talk based on her most recent book. In Algorithms of Oppression, requested to library.. thanks library

if the tech story could include a story of these patterns of global exploitation.. we might have a possibility for organizing and thinking in local and global ways for resisting that.. because ultimately that’s what i’m interested in.. t

2 convos via gershenfeld sel

ie: hlb via 2 convos that io dance.. as the day..[aka: not part\ial.. for (blank)’s sake…]..  a nother way

the voice in academia is often not our voice.. t

begs mech to listen to every voice.. as it could be..

the most vulnerable in our society becomes the experimental groups.. the commodities.. this is where indigenous communities have very deep knowledge and also very powerful forms of resistance to that and we need to keep those things in mind .. t

holmgren indigenous law





3 mi – in the end i call for alts.. what it means to imagine /create alts in our info public sphere that are based on a diff set of ethics..

imagine self-talk as data.. because of gershenfeld sel

as it could be..


book notes/quotes:


at summit w white house and nyu for academics, industry and activists concerned w social impact o ai in society: Julia Angwin, Cathy O’Neil

julia.. cathy


at the core of my argument is the way in which google biases search to its own economic interests.. for it profitability and to bolster its market dominance at any expense..


it is the persistent normalization of black people as aberrant and undeserving of human rights and dignity under the banners of public safety, tech innovation, and the emerging creative econ that i am directly challenging by showing the egregious (appallingways that dehumanization is rendered a legit free market tech project..t

i keep my eye on complicating the notion that info assumed to be ‘fact’ (by virtue of its legitimation at the top of the info pile) exists because racism and sexism are profitable under our system of racialized capitalismt


the black feminist scholar bell hooks has written extensively on the way s th a neoliberal capitalism is explicitly implicated in misrepresentations and hyper serialization of black women..


i intend to meaningfully articulate the ways that commercialization is the source of power that drives the consumption of black women’s and girls’ representative id on the web


most people surveyed could not tell the diff between paid advertising and ‘genuine’ (search) results..


google’s monopoly status, coupled w its algo practices of biasing info toward the interests o the neolib capital and social elites in the us, has resulted in a provision of info that purports to be credible but is actually a reflection of advertising interests..  yet.. google’s users think of it as a public resource, generally free from commercial interest..


google search is in fact an ad platform, not intended to solely serve as a public info resource in the way that, say, a library might. google creates advertising algos, not info algos..


in germany and france, for ie, it is illegal to sell nazi memorabilia, and google has had to put in place filters that ensure online retailers of such are not visable in search results..  indicates that google can in fact remove objectionable hits..  equally troubling.. the co provided search results w/o informing searchers that info was being deleted


the issue of unlawfulness over the harm caused by derogatory results is a question of considerable debate.. ie: in the us where free speech protections are afforded to all kinds of speech, including hate speech and racist or sexist depiction of people and communities, there is a higher standard of proof required to show harm toward disenfranchised or oppressed people..


search engine optimization is a major factor in findability on the web. what is important to note is that search engine optimization is a multibillion dollar industry that impacts the value of specific keywords; that is, marketers are invested in using particular keywords, and keyword combos, to optimize their rankings


despite the widespread beliefs in the intent as a democratic space where people have the power to dynamically participate as equals, the internet is in fact org’d to the benefit of powerful elites, including corporations that can afford to purchase and redirect searches to their own sites…


mounting evidence shows that automated decision making systems are disproportionately harmful to the most vulnerable and the least powerful, who have little ability to intervene in them – from misrepresentation to prison sentencing to accessing credit and their life impacting formulas..


info is a new commodity and search engines can function as private info enclosures..  (shift from public institutions such as libraries and schools as brokers of info to the private sector)


as it could be..

ie: hlb via 2 convos that io dance.. as the day..[aka: not part\ial.. for (blank)’s sake…]..  a nother way


find/follow Safiya:

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Asst prof at USC Annenberg School of Communication | new book!  | Researcher, author, media go-to on race, gender and technology

la, ca


automating ineq