Social Media

Instagram Digs into its Algorithm and Policies for Bias Against Black Users

In the wake of racial inequality protests going on in the US and other parts of the world, tech companies have had a major role to play. Instagram is also taking a big leap to elevate Black voices. It wants to dig deeper into the platform to root out any biasness against black users.

Instagram’s top executive, Adam Mosseri, revealed the development yesterday in a blog post.

“The irony that we’re a platform that stands for elevating Black voices, but at the same time Black people are often harassed, afraid of being ‘shadowbanned’, and disagree with many content takedowns, is not lost on me,” wrote Mosseri.

The platform is going to take “a harder look” at how it impacts communities differently on four different aspects; Harassment, Account verification, Content distribution, and Algorithmic bias.

To deal with harassment on the platform, Instagram will review “specific safety issues” black users face both on and off Instagram.

On account verification, Instagram plans to review the verification criteria to ensure its inclusive as possible.

The distribution will touch on how content placed in the Explore and Hashtag pages is filtered. And whether the algorithms might be biased in some way or the other. This is specifically a major issue and has been raised in the past concerning “shadowbanning” where it is believed that the algorithm filters some people without transparency thus limiting their posts’ reach.

“…we need to be clearer about how decisions are made when it comes to how people’s posts get distributed,” Mosseri wrote.

Besides that, the company will also consider how they can better serve other underrepresented groups on the platform.

Instagram’s head says they will provide an update “over the next few months.”

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Alvin Wanjala

Alvin Wanjala has been writing about technology for over 2 years. He writes about different topics in the consumer tech space. He loves streaming music, programming, and gaming during downtimes.

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