Machine bias and the politics of artifacts

We will be kicking off our conversations with a pairing of a recent Pulitzer-nominated piece on algorithmic bias and a landmark text on technologically-embedded politics:
—  The first piece is a report on bias in algorithms predicting recidivism, published in the investigative journalism nonprofit ProPublica by Julia Angwin, Jeff Larson, Surya Mattu and Lauren Kirchner. You can find the piece here: https://www.propublica.org/article/machine-bias-risk-assessments-in-criminal-sentencing
* Optional: For debate around the piece you can also see this MIT review article, the software company’s defence and the journalists’ response.
— The second piece is political theorist Langdon Winner’s “Do Artifacts Have Politics?” (Winner, L. 1980. “Do Artifacts Have Politics?” Daedalus 109 (1): 121-136).

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