Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Conference papers

Computer algorithms prefer headless women

Abstract : Advertising algorithms power the online digital economy. However, it is unclear whether they may end up distorting the kind of information people are exposed to. To explore this we ran a randomized online ad campaign on Snapchat on behalf of a French computer science school that explored how the ad algorithm allocated pictorial content representing gender. Our results show that pictures depicting a complete male torso was shown more to teens, while the female picture that was displayed most by the algorithm depicted the woman as not having a head. We present suggestive evidence that these algorithms are driven by preferences in large population centers in Paris as it appears the algorithm determines which images are the most "engaging" on the first day for the places with the largest numbers of users and replicates this pattern going forward elsewhere.
Document type :
Conference papers
Complete list of metadata
Contributor : Médiathèque Télécom SudParis & Institut Mines-Télécom Business School Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Friday, October 25, 2019 - 4:21:04 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 25, 2022 - 10:40:40 PM


  • HAL Id : hal-02333913, version 1


Grazia Cecere, Clara Jean, Matthieu Manant, Catherine Tucker. Computer algorithms prefer headless women. 2018 MIT CODE : Conference on Digital Experimentation, Oct 2018, Boston, United States. ⟨hal-02333913⟩



Record views