Keynote Speakers

 

Do not recommend: How platforms reduce the visibility of some content, and why

Keynote talk by Tarleton Gillespie

Public debate about content moderation has overwhelmingly focused on removal: social media platforms deleting content and suspending users, or opting not to. But removal is not the only available remedy. Reducing the visibility of problematic content is becoming a commonplace part of platform governance. These platforms use machine learning classifiers to identify content that is misleading enough, harmful enough, offensive enough that, while they do not warrant removal according to the site’s guidelines, they warrant reducing their visibility by demoting them in algorithmic rankings and recommendations, or excluding them entirely. This talk documents this shift and explains how reduction works. Tarleton Gillespie raises questions about how and why platforms now use the decision of what and what not to recommend as a form of content moderation. Despite our distrust of platforms and how they have conducted content moderation up to this point, reduction policies may be the most mature step platforms have taken yet. On the other hand, this concentrates even more curatorial power in the hands of these elite, private, Western, profit-oriented intermediaries - using techniques that, at least so far, remain completely invisible to existing apparatuses of accountability.

Short bio

Tarleton Gillespie is a senior principal researcher at Microsoft Research and an affiliated associate professor in the Department of Communication and Department of Information Science at Cornell University. His most recent book is Custodians of the Internet: Platforms, Content Moderation, and the Hidden Decisions that Shape Social Media (Yale, 2018).

Practical info

Digital Society Conference 2021 
29 November 2021 
13.00 - 13.55 hr 
This talk will be in English
To join this keynote talk, please register 

 

 

The New Cybernetics: reflections on a work in progress? 

Keynote talk by Distinguished Professor Genevieve Bell 

The theory of Cybernetics first found form in the 1940s and 1950s as a response to the rapid outgrowth of computing technology following World War II. As a field, it fused maths, engineering, and philosophy with biology, psychology, and anthropology, among many others. It was robustly interdisciplinary before that term was in common currency. It theorised an approach to next-generation computational systems that encompassed technology, culture, and the environment.

In this talk, Professor Genevieve Bell explains how we might reinterpret Cybernetics for the 21st century to help us think about how to design and manage complex technological systems at scale, particularly in the context of our changing human, ecological and digital environments. These ideas come together to lay the foundations for the inaugural ANU School of Cybernetics’ mission to re-invigorate cybernetics as an important platform from which to make meaningful change in the world, and to establish a new branch of engineering to take AI safely, responsibly, and sustainably to scale.

Short bio

Distinguished Professor Genevieve Bell AO FTSE FAHA is a renowned anthropologist, technologist, and futurist. Genevieve completed her PhD in cultural anthropology at Stanford University in 1998 and is best known for her work at the intersection of cultural practice and technology development. She is currently the Director of the School of Cybernetics and the 3A Institute (3Ai) at the Australian National University (ANU) and also remains a Vice President and Senior Fellow at Intel Corporation.

Genevieve joined the ANU in 2017 after spending 18 years in Silicon Valley guiding Intel's product development and social science and user experience research capabilities. In 2017, Genevieve was appointed the inaugural Director of the 3A Institute, co-founded by the ANU and CSIRO's Data61. The Institute's mission is to establish a new branch of engineering to responsibly and sustainably scale AI-enabled cyber-physical systems. In 2021, she was appointed Director of the new School of Cybernetics at the ANU, which in addition to housing the 3A Institute, is focused on building capacity in Systems and Design.

Practical info

Digital Society Conference 2021 
30 November 2021 
13.00 - 13.55 hr 
This talk will be in English
To join this keynote talk, please register 

 

 

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