This week in digital trust » Episode 104

#105 Never mind Skynet, the algorithms are already in control

24 April 2024

News feeds, search results, directions across town, even job or rental applications – opaque algorithms determine an increasingly large proportion of our lives.

In the US, the Federal Trade Commission is going after landlords for using algorithms to illegally fix rental prices.
Back home, a secret algorithm determines how detainees in immigration detention are treated.

Through the lens of these two recent news stories, we explore the consequences of an increasingly algorithmically determined world and how algorithms can provide a false air of objectivity, giving cover for bad behaviour, bias or other errors.

FTC statement on price fixing by algorithm ⁠⁠
Guardian article about algorithmic risk-ratings for Serco immigration detainees ⁠⁠
ACCC v Trivago – misleading customers about their ranking algorithm ⁠⁠
Rod Sims 2017 speech on algorithms ⁠⁠
Comments on ADM by NSW OMbudsman (InnovationAus) ⁠⁠
CHOICE report on RentTech in Australia ⁠⁠
Algorithmic bias in sentencing (Pro Publica) ⁠⁠

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