Skincare brand Olay has partnered with Black Girls Code to fight the bias in algorithms with its #decodethebias campaign.
The campaign was announced during National Coding Week and aims to send at least 1,000 women of colour to code camp. Olay’s long-term goal is to double the number of women in STEM.
Olay has also partnered with coder and founder of Algorimthic Justice League, Joy Buolamwini and is using her expert insight to help drive real change.
#DecodeTheBias aims to highlight how data, computer code and AL can reinforce narrow beauty standards that exclude women of colour. For instance, Olay has found that if you search for beautiful skin, beautiful face or beautiful women, 80 per cent of the search results do not include women of colour.
Buolamwini said, “Beauty is in the eye of the coder.”
Algorithm bias is surprisingly common, in 2020 Twitter was found to be using a photo preview algorithm that was more likely to crop black faces in photos than white ones. Twitter has since apologised and updated its algorithm.
Basically, coders are not reflecting our diverse societies when they code, allowing the internet to reinforce toxic beauty standards.
To show its commitment to the initiative the skincare brand had its own platform, Olay Skin Advisor audited by AJL, for any issues of bias.
To get involved the skincare brand is asking for people to use the hashtag #DecodeTheBias on social media. The first 1200 hashtags will result in 1200 girls going to code school.
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