Specifics
USA, China [2020] - 86m
Genre
Documentary
Directed by
Shalini Kantayya
More info on
rating
2.5*/5.0*
Coded Bias poster

Watches

July 01, 2021

2.5*/5.0*

A documentary about artificial intelligence, machine learning, the inherent biases that seep into these tools and the dangers they present when combined with the surveillance state. That's a lot to cover in a 90-minute documentary, and it's no surprise that Kantayya keeps things rather superficial.

While I think the subject is very interesting (it's something I already encountered on a professional level), the actual complexity is a lot bigger than presented here. Coded Bias isn't too interested in complexity and context, instead it focuses on the issue of bias in isolation. While defendable, I feel this approach would be more suitable for a deep dive rather than the introductory documentary it tries to be.

If you're clueless about algorithms and the dangers of blindly relying on them, Coded Bias is not a terrible place to start. If, on the other hand, you're interested in how pressing these issues are and how these methods compare against other approaches, there's very little here. Instead, we get some poorly fleshed out narrative about two women trying to fight Big Tech. Documentary makers really need to up their game.