HP Investigating Alleged Racist Facial-Tracking Software
Hewlett-Packard is investigating the facial recognition software used with some of its PCs after a YouTube video surfaces that seems to show the software failing to recognize African-Americans. In the video, the facial-tracking software on an HP MediaSmart PC and camera respond to a white woman but fail to work properly for her black co-worker. HP is looking into what it calls root causes.Hewlett-Packard is looking into the facial recognition technology used in some of its PCs after a YouTube video surfaced that seems to show the software and camera failing to recognize an African-American man. The YouTube video of the facial recognition failure, which runs about 2 minutes, 16 seconds, was originally posted on the video-sharing Website Dec. 10. On Dec. 21, HP posted a blog response to the video, which assures customers that it is looking into the question of why the software seems to recognize the white woman featured in the video but not her black co-worker.
"Everything we do is focused on ensuring that we provide a high-quality experience for all our customers, who are ethnically diverse and live and work around the world," said an HP blog post by Tony "Frosty" Welch, the lead social media strategist for HP's Personal Systems Group. "That's why when issues surface, we take them seriously and work hard to understand the root causes."