Luciano Floridi, professor of philosophy and ethics of information at Oxford University and director of the Digital Ethics Lab, Oxford Internet Institute (OII), has been named a board member of the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation, a new organization within the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The Centre arose from a need for good governance, which will play a key role in making sure we have an environment which supports ethical innovation and will position the UK as a world leader in the development of AI. Its first projects will explore the use of data in shaping people’s online experiences, and it will “investigate the potential for bias in decisions made using algorithms”.Read More
Facebook and other social media companies have made strides since the 2016 election in screening for and eliminating misinformation. But the recent election cycle exposed how fragile the social media platforms remain. For Facebook, it takes an ad hoc “war room” with dozens of staff members working round-the-clock shifts. It takes hordes of journalists and fact checkers willing to police the platform for false news stories and hoaxes so that they can be contained before spreading to millions. It takes constant vigilance from law enforcement agencies, academic researchers and digital security experts for months on end.
Facebook was generally responsive to these problems after they were publicly called out. But the platform’s scale means that even people who work there are often in the dark.
A recent study by the Oxford Internet Institute, a department at the University of Oxford, found that 25 percent of all election-related content shared on Facebook and Twitter during the midterm election season could be classified as “junk news.”Read More
Are young people who spend seven hours or more a day on screens more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression or anxiety as those who use screens for an hour a day? A new study published in the journal Preventive Medicine Reports suggests there may be a correlation. However, not everyone agrees. “The authors appear to have cherry picked outcome measures in terms of what results they could find that are statistically significant,” says Andrew Przybylski, an associate professor and director of research at the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford in the UK.Read More