The "Avoid Ghetto" Walking App

At least that's what some are accusing Microsoft of patenting in its "Pedestrian Route Production" app, whose aim is to help pedestrians avoid unsafe neighborhoods "by taking information from maps, weather reports, crime statistics and demographics."
January 20, 2012, 1pm PST | Judy Chang
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"Sarah Chinn, author of Technology and the Logic of American Racism, says she understands why people might want a GPS feature like that to help them feel safe. But, she says, the new application will reinforce assumptions about violent crime that just aren't true.

"In much of dominant American culture, there's an assumption that criminality and being poor and not white go hand in hand," Chinn says. In reality, FBI crime statistics for 2010 show that whites were arrested more often for violent crimes that year than any other race."

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Published on Thursday, January 19, 2012 in NPR
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