AI Weekly: Facebook cannot please all the people all the time

AI Weekly: Facebook cannot please all the people all the time. According to leaked documents, human censors at the social network have devised well-intentioned guidelines for removing posts containing hate speech or other offensive content. It doesn’t matter if it’s humans or an AI that perform the censorship. “This question of ‘Can we invent one perfect set of mathematical principles that will determine the AIs for all eternity?’ — the answer, I think, is no,” Wolfram replied. Adobe chose to enter the voice space now, Adobe Analytics Cloud director of product management Colin Morris told VentureBeat, because improvements in speech recognition […] Facebook’s methods for detecting hate speech are being criticized today for the way in which they protect some groups and ignores others. The company announced today that it is launching a trio of services focused on natural language understanding and object recognition as part of its Einstein portfolio. Called Gears, the system is supposed to take independently developed models and bring them onto Bonsai’s platform for easier execution and monitoring. When users upload a model that includes a Gear to Bonsai’s platform, the […] JASK, which provides companies with software to monitor cyber threats, came out of stealth today and announced funding of $12 million in a round co-led by Dell Technologies Capital and TenEleven Ventures. Today some companies are taking brand anthropomorphism to a whole new level with sophisticated AI technologies. People worry that developments in A.I.

The 3 Announcements at F8 2017 That Impact Marketers Most
Mark Cuban Is Buying Twitter
Facebook’s M Assistant Says Goodbye
This an image of the AI Weekly Newsletter logo

Facebook’s flawed approach to censorship reveals a challenge faced by AI. According to leaked documents, human censors at the social network have devised well-intentioned guidelines for removing posts containing hate speech or other offensive content. In practice, however, they create a confusing, often contradictory set of practices.

As ProPublica reported, a post from U.S. Representative Clay Higgins in which he called for the slaughter of radicalized Muslims was permissible. “Hunt them, identify them, and kill them,” he wrote. “Kill them all. For the sake of all that is good and righteous. Kill them all.” Meanwhile, a post by Didi Delgado, a Black Lives Matter activist, was removed: “All white people are racist. Start from this reference point, or you’ve already failed.”

As these two examples reveal, striking a balance between free speech and hate speech from a universal set of guidelines is fraught with peril. Applying such a framework for one country’s audience is difficult, and attempting to do so for a global audience — Facebook has two billion users, is even more difficult. What is acceptable to one group, will offend another.

It doesn’t matter if it’s humans or an AI that perform the censorship.

Irwin Gotlieb, chairman of GroupM, raised this topic in a conversation with Stephen Wolfram, founder of Wolfram Research, and me this spring. Gotlieb described the scenario of one AI-car carrying one passenger and another carrying several passengers; if only one vehicle could be saved, how would an AI system determine a response?

“At the moment there isn’t one solution for the world, and different parties will put different rule sets against it, with different objectives,” Gotlieb said.

“This question of ‘Can we invent one perfect set of mathematical principles that will determine the AIs for all eternity?’ — the answer, I think, is no,” Wolfram replied.

While our conversation was about car safety, the same challenges can be found in Facebook’s approach to censorship. As Abraham Lincoln famously said, “You can never please all of the people all the time.”

Facebook may be doing a lousy job, but it’s a nearly impossible task.

For AI coverage, send news tips to Blair Hanley Frank and Khari Johnson, and guest post submissions to John Brandon — and be sure to bookmark our AI Channel.

Thanks for reading,
Blaise Zerega
Editor in Chief

P.S. Please enjoy this video, “AI and Machine Learning – Technology Frontiers,” from MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy.

From the AI Channel

Pin It on Pinterest

Shares
Share This