Google Friday released a report that analyzed the effects of the company’s policies and procedures on civil rights of its staff and consumers. The audit pointed out Google’s efforts in ensuring anti-discrimination is practised in its hiring and recruitment process as well as its retention program. It also highlighted Google’s formation of a team that checked for equal representation across all fields within the company
Regarding the market, the focus was on consumers and involved content moderation by screening to ensure that Google does n0t promote discriminatory values or bias. This was done for user-generated content, elections, and commercial advertisements. For personalized ads, Google avoided the targeting of consumers based on “sensitive interests” such as race while election ads underwent verification processes to countercheck true identity and prevent spreading of unlawful content.
Further, the report noted the growing reliance of Google on artificial intelligence. It highlighted the risk of lack of control of potential bias that could lead to ethnic discrimination if stricter terms are not taken up. There was a recommendation to have stronger relations with engineers creating AI packages so as to gain familiarity on Google’s principles.
Finally, there was an assessment of Google’s impact on society in general to ensure that people gain access to digital services. It acknowleged Google’s role in funding various tech-related startups, provisions of free training and funding to people in underprivileged communities, and general donation toward other socio-economic needs.
The report, however, mentioned that there was much more potential within the company to promote civil rights.