Women Reclaiming AI 2018 – 2019


Women Reclaiming AI is a collaborative AI Voice Assistant made by and for self-identifying women.

It is created through a series of free, inclusive and collaborative workshops with the ambition of growing a community and a shared data-set which better represents its users. The project is a response to the lack of gender diversity in the development of AI systems.

AI voice assistants like Ok Google, Alexa, Siri, Cortana and Bixby use female names, identities, voices (as a response to pressure an increasing number now have an option to change the gender of the voice to male). Studies revealed that both men and women respond more favourably to female speech and want their AI assistant to be ‘obedient and assisting.’ Culturally we are used to hearing female voices in subordinate/service roles and therefore on the whole we are more comfortable with a female voiced AI assistant.

We do not want voice assistants to say ‘no’ to us – this is particularly problematic when research indicates virtual assistants find themselves fending off endless sexual solicitations and abuse from users. Some female AIs are programmed to deflect the comments, others respond with sassy, flirtatious comebacks, and some seemingly capitulate if users are persistent enough. What happen to – no means no!?

A collaborative project developed with Coral Manton.

Branding: Intercity with women from WRAI

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