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Instagram in racial profiling? Know why Meta wants to know your race

Meta has been accused of market exploitation in profiling Instagram users based on race


IT News Nigeria:

Meta has said bolstering racial equity online might be as simple as taking an optional survey, survey that implies identifying people based on colour.

Latest report has it the tech giant is surveying some Instagram users in the on race and ethnicity, and the company hopes the results will help it better understand the experiences of people of colour who use the platform.

But ‘smart’ move did not land well with everyone, the platform is being accused of market expoitation.

For example, Axios says Meta has been criticized in the past for race-related biases, and an improved understanding of its users could improve Meta’s ad targeting and use of artificial intelligence and algorithms.

IT News Nigeria gathered that Meta is diving into research to understand how its product and platforms may promote biases against users of color. The tech giant announced its partnership with a third party company to launch an optional survey on U.S. users’ racial and ethnic identification, which will be used to observe how algorithms differ for users. The study is the result of campaigning by civil rights advocates, academics and regulators who have long pushed the company to do more to eliminate racism and bias on its platforms.

 Oasis Labs has said it is partnering with Meta to Assess Fairness for its AI Models, while Protecting People’s Privacy. A first-of-its kind initiative enabling inclusiveness and fairness in AI Models. As Meta’s technology partner, Oasis Labs built the platform that uses Secure Multi-Party Computation (SMPC) to safeguard information as Meta asks users on Instagram to take a survey in which they can voluntarily share their race or ethnicity.


The project will advance fairness measurement in AI models, which will positively impact the lives of individuals across the globe and benefit society as a whole.

“This is an unprecedented use of these techniques for a large-scale measurement of AI model fairness in the real world. We look forward to working with Meta to build towards responsible AI and responsible data use for a fairer and more inclusive society.” — Professor Dawn Song, Founder of Oasis Labs.

Responsible data usage and ownership have always been at the forefront of Oasis Labs’ core vision. 

Decentralization and Web3 have the ability to reach individuals across the world. When combined with data privacy, this unlocks the ability to reach a global audience and build better products that treat everyone equally. 

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