#parent | #kids | The Risk Makers – Type Investigations

Nonetheless, in March 2019, Brenton Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian, was able to activate Facebook Live and use it to broadcast his killing of more than 50 people over the course of 17 minutes. Then, 12 minutes after the attack, a user flagged the video as a problem, and it took nearly an hour, after law enforcement contacted Facebook, for the company to remove it. But by that time, the content had reached, and inspired, countless others.

What might a more integrated approach to risk look like? Gathering input from various departments and a diverse set of stakeholders is important, but not sufficient on its own. Individuals who are tasked with assessing risk also need the agency and authority to be part of the final decision-making, experts say.

Disparities like these are also racialized. A study released this summer, based on 2016 data, found that 10 major tech companies in Silicon Valley had no Black women on staff at all. Three large tech companies had no Black employees in any position, the study found. During the past four years, industry analysts have noted the slow pace of change. In 2019, 64.9% of Facebook’s technical teams were composed of white and Asian employees, 77% of whom were male.

Identifying more information, better algorithms, and enhanced technology doesn’t fundamentally reflect “a total shift of intentions,” however. Arguably, that approach, grounded in tech fixes, detrimentally doubles down on existing ones. Data and information after the fact, as predictive inputs, however necessary, are not sufficient. “Just imagine if these companies had said, ‘We’re going to hold onto launching this new feature or capability. We need another one and half years,’” says designer and technologist professor Batya Friedman, co-author of the book Value Sensitive Design: Shaping Technology with Moral Imagination. “These systems are being deployed very, very fast and at scale. These are really, really hard problems.”

There are reasons to doubt that tech leaders will slow down to adopt the kind of paradigm shift Noble describes on their own. Some 16 years after Facebook’s launch, calls are growing for government regulation of the tech industry and a renunciation of a business model that profits from the idea that content is “neutral” and platforms are objective, a model that, critics point out, cashes in on engagement and extremism.

Will Silicon Valley be more risk-aware in the future? Only those in power can say. While calls for a more activist public are evergreen, reliance on the demonstrably diminishing power of the people is naive. “The government should be passing laws to discipline profit-maximization behavior,” said Marianne Bertrand, an economics professor at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business. “But too many lawmakers have themselves become the employees of the shareholders — their electoral success tied to campaign contributions and other forms of deep-pocketed support.”

There is a growing sense of urgency to address massive concerns in the lead-up to the U.S. presidential election. Twitter and Facebook have both implemented various measures to address political disinformation on their platforms — flagging disinformation or blocking political ads immediately before the election, for example — but these solutions may not go far enough, and the stakes could not be higher.




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