"One of the questions we often ask ourselves, how do we know whether the AI is trustworthy or not?" said one research scientist while the discussing ethical and societal implications of AI. Bias in artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms is a reality. It was first highlighted through research done by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) which examined facial analysis software and found that the algorithm threw up more errors for dark-skinned women when compared to light-skinned men. However, despite the cautionary nature of this study and many more studies published later, the usage of AI has increased exponentially in the world. In India, the spike in deployment of AI and facial recognition surveillance systems are going unchecked due to the absence of data protection laws. MediaNama recently highlighted how facial recognition and AI-based video analytics will be a key aspect for detecting “suspects” as part of the Lucknow Safe City Project. Authorities in India finally seem to be waking up to the necessity of having ‘ethics’ in the usage of AI. Recently, the National Telecommunications Institute for Policy Research, Innovation and Training (NTIPRIT) in the Department of Telecommunications (under the Ministry of Communications) organised a webinar on “AI and Ethical Issues”. While the usage of AI is becoming more extensive across government verticals like agriculture, industry, education, and so on, questions arise on why the DoT is hosting a webinar on AI and ethics, and if the topic wouldn't be better suited for the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) -…
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