" ITREALMS: Seven ideas receive funding on Artificial intelligence and news - ITREALMS

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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Seven ideas receive funding on Artificial intelligence and news - ITREALMS

From combating the spread of misinformation to expanding awareness of the impact of artificial intelligence on society, seven projects shaping the effects that artificial intelligence has on the field of news and information received $750,000 in funding, reports ITREALMS.

The Ethics and Governance in AI Initiative, a joint project of the MIT Media Lab and the Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, awarded the funding through the AI and the News Open Challenge.

Emerging from more than 500 submissions, the winning projects will include an effort to combat the spread of misinformation through the messaging platform WhatsApp, where one group will accelerate the work of fact checkers in India, where the spread of dubious videos there have led to lynchings.

Other projects will help to augment and support the work of journalists by experimenting with the opportunity offered by AI in sifting through reams of information, training reporters to cover this emerging field and supporting an in-depth series on the effects of AI on American workers.

“These winners showcase both the opportunities and challenges posed by artificial intelligence. On one hand, the technology offers a tremendous opportunity to improve the way we work — including helping journalists find key information buried in mountains of public records. Yet we are also seeing a range of negative consequences as AI becomes intertwined with the spread of misinformation and disinformation online,” said Tim Hwang, who leads the initiative. “We’re thrilled to support these winners as they pilot new efforts to ensure these technological breakthroughs have positive social impact.”

Projects include Chequeado: Building regional knowledge about AI by producing an investigative series on the ethics of algorithms and the implications in Latin America

Legal Robot: Helping journalists and the public find the connections between public agencies and the companies they hire by using artificial intelligence to extract information from large-scale public records requests

MuckRock Foundation: Making it easier for newsrooms, researchers, and communities to analyze documents through crowdsourcing and machine learning tools.

Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, CUNY Foundation: Training community media journalists to uncover and analyze artificial intelligence systems, and to produce news pieces that center on the impact of this technology on immigrants and low-income communities

Rochester Institute of Technology: Helping journalists more easily spot suspicious media by developing detection techniques that quickly identify and detect evidence that video or audio was faked, using recent developments in machine learning.

Seattle Times: Launching a one-year reporting project that will inform and engage readers in the social, ethical and practical implications of artificial intelligence and its influence on the way people work.

Tattle Civic Technologies: Combating misinformation on WhatsApp and other chat apps in India by increasing the efficiency of fact checking and the accessibility of fact checked information for mobile-first WhatsApp users.

Launched in 2017, the Ethics and Governance of AI Initiative is supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Omidyar Network, LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. The Initiative is a fiscal sponsorship fund of The Miami Foundation.

“AI’s impact to quality news and information are a global concern,” said Paul Cheung, Knight Foundation’s director of Journalism and Technology Innovation. “We are thrilled that our winners represent a global community of journalists and technologists who are offering a diverse array of solutions to ensure AI is used for public good.”
ITREALMS recalls that the Ethics and Governance of AI Initiative was launched in 2017, as a hybrid research effort and philanthropic fund that seeks to ensure that technologies of automation and machine learning are researched, developed, and deployed in a way which vindicate social values of fairness, human autonomy, and justice. The Initiative is a joint project of the MIT Media Lab and the Harvard Berkman-Klein Center for Internet and Society. It incubates a range of research, prototyping, and advocacy activities within these two anchor institutions and across the broader ecosystem of civil society.

Chuks Egbune/DoP

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