AlgorithmWatch is a non-profit research and advocacy organization that is committed to watch, unpack and analyze automated decision-making (ADM) systems and their impact on society.

Story

1 December 2022

#unitedstates #vote

Algorithmic elections: How automated systems quietly disenfranchise voters

In the United States, automated systems purge voters rolls and verify signatures. They sometimes discard valid votes, especially in historically marginalized communities. Such systems are unlikely to be as widespread in the European Union.

A person voting in Washington, D.C. Negative by Marion S. Trikosko, 1964.

Open Letter: EU must protect fundamental freedoms for online political speech

As EU lawmakers negotiate important new transparency rules for online political ads, AlgorithmWatch and 8 other civil society organizations are calling on the German government to address serious risks to democratic pluralism and freedom of expression contained in the Council’s most recent proposal.

Mastodon could make the public sphere less toxic, but not for all

The open-source social network gained millions of new users following Twitter’s takeover. While some of its features could improve the quality of public discourse, disadvantaged communities might be excluded.

Jack Sharp - unsplash

Blog

26 October 2022

#fellowship

AlgorithmWatch is offering 5 fellowships in algorithmic accountability reporting

Fellows will receive €1,200 per month during 6 months and will report on automated decision-making in Europe.

Story

2 November 2022

#dsa #fediverse #mastodon

The fediverse is growing, but power imbalances might stay

Alternative social network Mastodon, which has no algorithmic timeline and a decentralized structure, is rapidly gaining steam. But the regulatory framework, which was built for billion-dollar companies, could dampen its growth.

Image: Mastodon gGmbH

Open letter: the German government should stand up for a strong ban on biometric surveillance in the Council of EU negotiations regarding the AI Act  

AlgorithmWatch and 26 other civil society organizations are calling on the German government to stand up in the negotiations on the AI Act and advocate for a strong ban on biometric surveillance as mirrored in its coalition treaty.

Photo by Niv Singer on Unsplash

Story

2 November 2022

#auditing #recommender

How researchers are upping their game to audit recommender systems

Recommender systems, such as a social network’s news feed or a streaming service’s recommendations, are notoriously difficult to audit. Despite high hurdles, practitioners from journalism and academia are pushing forward.

Publications

Read our comprehensive reports, analyses and working papers on the impact and ethical questions of algorithmic decision-making, written in collaboration with our network of researchers and civil society experts. See our publications

7 September 2022

AutoCheck workshops on Automated Decision-Making Systems and Discrimination

Understanding causes, recognizing cases, supporting those affected: documents for implementing a workshop.

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Journalistic stories

How does automated decision-making effect our daily lives? Where are the systems applied and what happens when something goes wrong? Read our journalistic investigations on the current use of ADM systems and their consequences. Read our stories

Photo by Greg Bulla on Unsplash

26 October 2022

Visa-free travelers to the EU will undergo “risk” checks from 2023. Who counts as risky remains unclear

Two EU agencies, Frontex and eu-LISA, are developing ETIAS, a new system that automatically assesses the “risk” posed by some travelers. The sorting algorithm will be trained in part with past decisions by border guards.

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Positions

Read our responses and expert analyses on current political and regulatory developments concerning automated decision-making. Read our positions

Adrian GrycukCC BY-SA 3.0

18 October 2022

Civil society responds to the Council of Europe Treaty on AI

Together with other observer civil society organizations in the Committee on AI in the Council of Europe, AlgorithmWatch stresses the importance of that legal framework on AI based on human rights, democracy, and the rule of law that is currently being elaborated in Strasbourg. We urge the EU not to delay this process in light of the negotiations on its own AI Act currently ongoing in Brussels. The two frameworks have a different purpose and should complement rather than copy-paste each other.

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Blog

Upcoming events, campaigns and updates from our team – here is where you get your news about AlgorithmWatch. Visit our blog

Photo by AbsolutVision on Unsplash

21 September 2022

A guide to the Digital Services Act, the EU’s new law to rein in Big Tech

Everything you need to know about the Digital Services Act (DSA), Europe’s new law to make powerful tech platforms like YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram more transparent and accountable for the risks they pose to society.

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Projects

Our research projects take a specific look at automated decision-making in certain sectors, ranging from sustainablity, the COVID-19 pandemic, human resources to social media platfroms and public discourse. You can also get involved! Engage and contribute, for example with a data donation! Learn more about our projects

About the project, 1 April 2021

SustAIn: The Sustainability Index for Artificial Intelligence

How sustainable is Artificial Intelligence? At this point in time, we are aware that a lot of energy is needed in the development and application of AI, that so-called click workers classify data sets for training AI systems under very poor working conditions and that these systems quite often reinforce existing patterns of discrimination. In view of an increasing number of AI systems in use, there is an urgent need to discuss how AI can be made more sustainable. This is where our project SustAIn comes in.

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