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Google Employees Resign In Protest Of Pentagon AI Project - USA Politics Today

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At least a dozen Google employees have resigned in protest over the company collaborating with the Department of Defense by supplying artificial intelligence for a controversial military pilot program for the DoD known as Project Maven, after thousands of employees signed a letter last month asking the company to cancel the Pentagon contract and institute a policy against working for the military. ‘We can no longer ignore our industry’s and our technologies’ harmful biases, large-scale breaches of trust, and lack of ethical safeguards. These are life and death stakes,” the petition read. Project Maven, developed to scan images in drone footage and identify targets and classify images of objects and people— was launched in April 2017, and according to a Pentagon memo,aims to “augment or automate Processing, Exploitation and Dissemination (PED) for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in support of the Defeat-ISIS campaign” in order to “reduce the human factors burden of [full motion video] analysis, increase actionable intelligence, and enhance military decision-making.” More than 1,000 academics and researchers penned an open letter in support of the Google employees and calling on the company to cease work on Project Maven. The letter touches on the implications of Google working with the Pentagon: A few of the Google employees that chose to resign in protest spoke to Gizmodo anonymously about the reasoning behind their decision. “At some point, I realized I could not in good faith recommend anyone join Google, knowing what I knew. I realized if I can’t recommend people join here, then why am I still here?” one resigning Google employee told Gizmodo. “I tried to remind myself right that Google’s decisions are not my decisions. I’m not personally responsible for everything they do. But I do feel responsibility when I see something that I should escalate it,” another said. “Actions speak louder than words, and that’s a standard I hold myself to as well. I wasn’t happy just voicing my concerns internally. The strongest possible statement I could take against this was to leave,” a resigning employee added. Source: Truth In Media

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