Gender, Stratification, Technology

Exposing the Bias Embedded in Tech

Peggy Johnson of Microsoft said biases needed to be exposed to be addressed. “The way to turn anything around is to shine a light on it.”

By Alina Tugend

June 17, 2019

In 2010, Kinect for Microsoft’s Xbox gaming system, in which users played with gestures and spoken commands rather than a controller, was ready to go to market.

But just before it did, a woman who worked for the company took the game home to play with her family, and a funny thing happened. The motion-sensing devices worked just fine for her husband, but not so much for her or her children.

That’s because the system had been tested on men ages 18 to 35 and didn’t recognize as well the body motions of women and children, said Peggy Johnson, executive vice president of business development at Microsoft.

Family, Gender, Social Problems

Japan’s Working Mothers: Record Responsibilities, Little Help From Dads. Men in Japan do fewer hours of housework and child care than in any of the world’s richest nations. That keeps women from getting better jobs and holds back the economy. Image: Kazuko Yoshida doing the family’s laundry after dinner. By Motoko Rich Feb. 2, 2019

Gender, Media

Male journalists ignore female peers on Twitter, study shows. Men’s domination of online political debate leaves women struggling to be heard. by Jim Waterson Media editor Sun 24 Jun 2018. Male journalists reply to each other 91.5% of the time, according to the study. Male journalists dominate online political discussion because they mainly interact with other men and ignore women, according to a study of American political reporters.