Amazon Shuts Down Recruitment AI After It Started Preferring Male Candidates

DC: Amazon shut down an experimental artificial intelligence recruitment engine after it started preferring male candidates and penalizing resumes including certain all-female colleges or words like “women’s,” Reuters reported Tuesday.

Amazon has had a team working on AI recruitment tools since 2014, seeking to make it easier for employers to find their top applicants. Several members of the team who spoke to Reuters on condition on anonymity said their experimental product began showing a bias against female candidates and had to be shut down in 2015. Amazon disbanded the team in 2017.

“Everyone wanted this holy grail,” one of the people told Reuters. “They literally wanted it to be an engine where I’m going to give you 100 resumes, it will spit out the top five, and we’ll hire those.”

The AI was designed to identify patterns among top applicants and resumes, and the team gave the AI the past 10 years of Amazon applications to use as a sample. The team says that because the majority of those applicants were male, the AI developed a bias against women. more here

14 Comments on Amazon Shuts Down Recruitment AI After It Started Preferring Male Candidates

  1. It’s long been the great challenge of Artificial Intelligence: creating an AI indistinguishable from human intelligence (passing the Turing Test). Google has done it with their HR gizmo because it exhibits the ability to make valid human-like distinctions in job applicants. But Google is so politically correct that their own level of intelligence is functionally stupid and they don’t recognize their achievement.




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  2. Who knew that computers and AI human resources devices were a bunch of male, sexist pigs. They’re showing there inner HAL 9000 and Dalek programming worldviews. And does it say EXTERMINATE whenever a female candidate or minority applies for a job at Amazon?




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  3. Because gender/race/political views do not compute in terms of “best employee for the job” which is the only thing supported by LOGIC.




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  4. One of my first jobs was in a department where all of the other employees were female. A female friend of my admitted that she could never do that because she hated working in an all female environment.

    I thought that this was just a one-off type of comment, but since then I have heard this sentiment from many women, including one just a few months ago. Men never actually voice this opinion because it will get them sued or fired. A comedian once observed in a bit about understanding women that “women understand other women, and they hate each other.” Nuff said.




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  5. Wow, ‘Artificial Intelligence’ is smarter than real intelligence?
    Overall, which is better for general warehouse work, men or women?
    Which is better at packaging and labeling?
    Which more often shows up on time and stays the entire shift?
    Ans: A good employee.




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  6. I think the problem is that an actual it is far more difficult for a true AI to also be politically correct because political correctness requires cognitive dissonance.




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  7. Back in the day I was talking to a guy who became the manager of an IBM keypunch department which consisted of around 30 or 35 women (all keypunch operators were females at that time, for whatever reason). He said the worst aspect of the job was that, on any given day, at least 3 or 4 of the gals were going to be on their period.

    True story.




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  8. Actually, back in the day Vietvet automotive electronics plants were almost 100% female on the production floor. It got pretty interesting in the summertime cuz the northern plant floors weren’t air conditioned.
    You’ll find something similar today in the Mexico and Brazil plants.




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