Wal-Mart Stereotypes African Americans

Wal-Mart is under fire this morning for their online ‘movie suggestions‘. when someone wanted to buy a dvd through the Wal-Mart website it also suggested other movies the customer might be interested in (kind of like netflix does). this technology is called ‘item-mapping’ and it apparently linked the dvd ‘Planet of the Apes’ with other films about African Americans including Martin Luther King Jr, boxer Jack Johnson, singer Tina Turner and actress Dorothy Dandridge. Apparently the system has since been shutdown.

This reminds me of the time that Ebay used similar technology with Google ads. A while ago when you googled the words ‘African Slaves’ an Ebay ad appeared saying ‘African Slaves for Sale‘. I guess technology just malfunctions sometimes.

Wal-Mart Stereotypes African Americans

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