Who should we listen to when deciding whether a criminal will reoffend: a sophisticated algorithm, or random people on the internet? Trick question – it turns out they both produce the same results, according to a new analysis that demonstrates the danger of handing over control of our lives to the machines.
Such predictive algorithms are already well-entrenched, informing and making crucial decisions. But for many of them, evidence they are accurate and fair is lagging behind. This needs to change.
“We have a tendency to immediately trust them because we consider them ‘smart’ or ‘intelligent’,” says Sandra Wachter at the Oxford Internet Institute. But perhaps we should be more critical.
As a case in point, a new paper published in Science Advances this week looked at a well-established tool called Correctional Offender Management Profiling for