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Communications of the ACM

ACM Opinion

Leadership Lessons about Ethical AI and Algorithms

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Illustration of young girl negatively impacted by hurtful social media reactions

Consequences that include suicidal thoughts and human trafficking don't require an ethicist or much debate to conclude they are fundamentally wrong regardless of beneficial business outcomes.

The Wall Street Journal's recent series about Facebook highlights all manner of unintended consequences of its algorithms, from suicidal thoughts among some teenage Instagram users to enabling human trafficking. While Facebook apparently had the best tools in place to identify these unintended consequences, its leaders failed to act, according to the report.

The complexity of modern algorithms may make it difficult to predict all the outcomes, meaning tech leaders must consider the possibilities and put monitoring mechanisms in place to identify any potential and unforeseen adverse outcomes.

From TechRepublic
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