Written by 22:00 Tech News Views: [tptn_views]

6 Eye-Opening Revelations from the Uber Eats Discrimination Story

Uber, the popular app-based rideshare and food delivery giant, recently found itself under fire for its controversial facial recognition technology’s impact on a courier. Learn how this story has significant implications regarding technology’s role in times of racial discrimination in our modern world.

1. The Story of Pa Edrissa Manjang

Pa Edrissa Manjang, a hardworking food courier who utilized the Uber Eats platform to earn his livelihood from November 2019, found himself embroiled in an unwarranted situation. A racial bias within Uber’s facial recognition system prevented him from using the app – an unfortunate example of technology not embracing diversity and inclusion.

2. The Role of Facial Recognition

This incident highlights the pitfalls of overly relying on technology. Uber’s facial recognition checks were designed to ensure security and prevent fraud. However, these systems’ unanticipated discrimination underlines that technology isn’t infallible and can, in fact, perpetuate discriminatory practices due to inherent biases in its programming.

3. Implications of Racial Discrimination

The incident has spurred a debate on the ethical uses of technology. While technology is swiftly evolving, it is equally crucial to ensure it does not perpetuate or strengthen the existing societal biases. The alarming inconvenience caused to Manjang due to the discriminatory facial recognition checks poses serious questions on the ethical adoption of AI.

4. Payout by Uber

Uber, following the incident, acknowledged the oversight and provided a payout to Manjang. This turnaround underscores the importance Uber places on its platform users and the lengths it will go to rectify inadvertent errors.

5. Possible Future Directions

In light of this incident, companies may need to reassess their priorities. The need of the hour is deploying unbiased technology that takes into account racial and ethnic diversity. Moreover, proper audits and tests before launching technologies like facial recognition systems can preemptively help to avoid such racially discriminatory outcomes.

6. Uber in the Spotlight

With this incident, Uber inadvertently became a focus of discussion about racial discrimination in technology. However, the incident’s quick resolution could lead the company to reassess its practices and take the lead in developing non-biased technological solutions.

In conclusion, the story opened significant discussions about racial discrimination and technology’s role in it. These are far-reaching conversations that tap into our everyday lives, reminding us all that technology must be developed responsibly, acknowledging and embracing our diverse society. This story, then, serves as a landmark, teaching an essential lesson about progress and inclusivity in our rapidly advancing digital world.

Credit: BBC. TechCrunch, Reuters