Google says sorry for racist auto-tag in photo app

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Google Photos labelled a picture of two black people as ‘gorillas’. How could such a mistake be possible? There's something more to this than just a mistake.

Just imagine the embarrassment. Being African American and being labeled as a gorilla on Google? There's alot of racism circulating in today's modern society, which is under toned and downplayed. However, it does still exist - unfortunately.

“Google Photos, y’all fucked up. My friend’s not a gorilla,” Jacky Alciné tweeted on Sunday after a photo of him and a friend was mislabelled as “gorillas” by the app.


Shortly after, Alciné was contacted by Yonatan Zunger, the chief architect of social at Google.

“Big thanks for helping us fix this: it makes a real difference,” Zunger tweeted to Alciné.

He went on to say that problems in image recognition can be caused by obscured faces and “different contrast processing needed for different skin tones and lighting”.

“We used to have a problem with people (of all races) being tagged as dogs, for similar reasons,” he said. “We’re also working on longer-term fixes around both linguistics (words to be careful about in photos of people) and image recognition itself (e.g., better recognition of dark-skinned faces). Lots of work being done and lots still to be done, but we’re very much on it.”

Hopefully, lets see the improvement over the next few months regarding these technical issues. Not a good look Google. Not good at all.