When a woman googled “unprofessional hairstyles”, she was taken aback when she saw mostly natural hairstyles of black women. She then googled “professional hairstyles”, only to find what she expected…all pictures of white women.
I did the same thing, and there’s definitely a racial divide! We can’t deny that, although we have to keep in mind of Google’s search results, regarding the sites’ platform and query wording. Those differ, but the overall ethnic problem in this search is obviously biased on so many levels.
Guardian broke the story on this young woman who tweeted her Google search, and since her tweet, she’s been retweeted over 11,000 times.
Recently, an MBA student named Rosalia (@Bonkamona on Twitter) discovered something alarming: Googling “unprofessional hairstyles for work” yielded image results mainly of black women with natural hair, while searching for the “professional” ones offered pictures of coiffed, white women.
Often the hair styles themselves were not vastly different — only the hair type and the wearer’s skin.
Rosalia’s tweet has since been retweeted thousands of times – more than 6,200 in the first 24 hours, she says – as her discovery sparked discussion on implicit racial biases against black people in the workplace. Can an algorithm itself be racist? Or is it only reflecting the wider social landscape? ~Via Guardian
What’s your take on this?