Coded Bias

Filmmaker: Shalini Kantayya
Runtime: 86 min

Synopsis: Modern society sits at the intersection of two crucial questions: What does it mean when artificial intelligence (AI) increasingly governs our liberties? And what are the consequences for the people AI is biased against? When MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers that most facial-recognition software does not accurately identify darker-skinned faces and the faces of women, she delves into an investigation of widespread bias in algorithms. As it turns out, artificial intelligence is not neutral, and women are leading the charge to ensure our civil rights are protected.


About the Filmmaker

Filmmaker Shalini Kantayya’s most recent film TIkTok Boom, premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. Kantayya’s Coded Bias, premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim. Coded Bias was broadcast nationally on PBS Emmy-award winning series Independent Lens and will stream globally on Netflix in April 2021. The film won a SIMA Award for Best Director, and has been nominated for a Critics’ Choice, a Cinema Eye Honors, and NAACP Image Award, among others. Shalini’s debut feature, Catching the Sun, premiered at the LA Film Festival and was named a NY Times Critics’ Pick. Catching the Sun released globally on Netflix on Earth Day 2016 with Executive Producer Leonardo DiCaprio, and was nominated for the Environmental Media Association Award for Best Documentary. She directed the season finale of the National Geographic television series Breakthrough, Executive Produced by Ron Howard, broadcast globally in June 2017. She has also directed for NOVA and YouTube Originals. Shalini is a TED Fellow, a William J. Fulbright Scholar, and an Associate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.