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Google workers demand reinstatement and apology for fired Black AI ethics researcher

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December 17, 2020 at 03:15AM

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Timnit Gebru’s departure sparked outrage in the industry as it followed her paper criticizing the company’s diversity efforts

Google employees have sent a letter to senior leadership demanding that the company reinstate and apologize to Timnit Gebru, a prominent Black researcher who said she was fired after criticizing the company’s diversity efforts.

Gebru’s departure in early December has sparked outrage among Google staff and the industry at large. The letter – sent by Gebru’s colleagues on Google’s AI ethics team to the company’s top management, including CEO Sundar Pichai – demands they offer Gebru a chance to return to the company at a higher position, in addition to making a public commitment to uphold research integrity and integrate racial literacy training. The letter also asks that management not to retaliate against the team for speaking out about Gebru’s case.

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