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11/09/20

Fighting to protect people’s rights from machines

Student-led committee will host discussion with renowned filmmaker, activist on Nov. 12

Award-winning filmmaker Shalini Kantayya will discuss whether technology can be neutral, racial bias in technology, and what happens to human rights when machines encroach on social systems at a free, virtual event hosted by the Wisconsin Union Directorate (WUD) Distinguished Lecture Series (DLS) Committee on Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m. 

During the event, titled “Coded Bias: How Human Prejudice Creates Corrupt Technology,” Kantayya will participate in a moderated discussion as well as a 30-minute question and answer session. Sydney Tang, the director of the WUD DLS Committee, will moderate the event.

WUD DLS will livestream the event on YouTube. Registration is required to receive the YouTube link and watch the lecture. The registration form can be filled out here. The committee invites all to attend this event.

Shalini K smKantayya’s many professional achievements include directing the season finale of the National Geographic series “Breakthrough”; producing and directing the film “Coded Bias”; and writing and directing the film “Catching the Sun,” which was named a New York Times Critics’ Pick and was nominated for the Environmental Media Association Award for Best Documentary. Kantayya is also a TED Fellow, a William J. Fulbright Scholar, and an associate of the University of California Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

UW-Madison students, staff and faculty can also watch the film “Coded Bias” for free if they complete the form here before noon on Nov. 10. This online film showing is presented by the WUD DLS Committee and the WUD Film Committee.

“As machines and code enter more and more parts of people’s lives, Shalini Kantayya is taking an important look at how bias can be coded into technology and how that coded bias can impact our rights,” said Caoilfhinn Rauwerdink, associate director of marketing and outreach for WUD DLS.

WUD DLS hosts lectures by and discussions with engaging experts to encourage thought-provoking conversations.

WUD includes 11 committees and six Wisconsin Hoofers clubs that program thousands of events each year. All UW-Madison students are welcome to join the committees and clubs that help make Wisconsin Union experiences for a lifetime possible.

Those interested in attending the Committee’s upcoming discussion can learn more about the event here.