Decoding the Patriarchy

There is currently considerable research into how the discriminatory practices of everyday social living have been transposed into the technological realm. For instance, many of the same biases we are witness and subject to in our physical realities, when transferred over into the digital sphere, see themselves exaggerated and expanded. 

This panel will depart from an exploration of the ways in which technology may produce and reproduce some of the most pernicious inequalities of our societies. Take the example of the facial surveillance/detection function: Snapchat demonstrated its inability to overcome racial biases in the coding of the facial recognition algorithms, thus failing to recognize people of non-white ethnicities (particualrly individuals of East-Asian descent) in order for them to use the “filter” functionality fo the app. Relatedly, we see it in the case of the wife-tracking application sold in Saudi Arabia. In this respect, panelists will talk about data amalgamation, algorithmic bias, the gender problem in the tech sector etc. The panel will then turn to a discussion of the ways in which people are challenging these harmful applications of technology. In particular, it will look at the ways in which technology is being harnessed to achieve equity for both women and other marginalized groups. 

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