Main content

What happens when algorithms go ‘evil’?

Algorithms are the powerful mathematical tools which shape so much of modern life, from the news which appears in our timelines to the adverts which pop up on our computer. But with algorithms now assessing CVs for jobs, or mortgage applications, the need to understand what they do, and if necessary challenge them is greater than ever before. Emily Bell investigates how badly algorithms can go wrong and how we can exert legal or democratic control over them when they often can't be understood.

First broadcast on Controlling the Unaccountable Algorithm, 27 December 2016.

Release date:


6 minutes

This clip is from