Making Siri a genderless helper
为什么大多语音助手都是“女声”?
www.i21st.cn
BY wangxingwei from 21st Century
Published 2019-08-12
TUCHONG
导读:各式各样的智能语音助手为我们的生活带来了便利,但你是否曾思考过这样一个问题:为什么这些语音助手大多是“女声”?而联合国近期的一份报告认为,这样的现状或许会加剧性别歧视……

When was the last time you heard a “male” voice assistant? Chances are never, as most of the artificial intelligence (AI) we’re used to hearing is “female”, like Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa. However, a new UN study argues that this shows a negative gender bias.
上一次你听见“男性”语音助手的声音,是什么时候?很有可能你从没听过这样的声音,因为我们所使用的大多数人工智能助手都是“女性”的声音,比如苹果的Siri和亚马逊的 Alexa。但联合国的一份新研究却认为,这体现了一种负面的性别歧视。

The UNESCO report has looked into the effect of having female voice assistants, saying they encourage the idea that women typically hold assistant jobs and that they should be “docile”.
这份联合国教科文组织的报告调查了使用女性语音助手所带来的影响,认为它们助长了女性大多做着助理工作,并且就应当“温顺听话”的想法。

“Because the speech of most voice assistants is female, it sends a signal that women are obliging, docile and eager-to-please helpers, available at the touch of a button or with a blunt voice command like ‘hey’ or ‘OK’,” said the report.
“由于大多数语音助手都是女声,这传递出了一种信号:女性都是乐于助人、温顺听话、急欲取悦他人的助手形象,轻轻一点或者用生硬的语音命令(如“嘿”、“OK”)便可唤来,”该报告表示。

Meanwhile, by naming voice assistants with traditionally female names, like Alexa and Siri, tech companies have also strengthened stereotypes of women, according to the report. For example, in Norwegian, Siri means “a beautiful woman who leads you to victory”, according to The Week magazine.
与此同时,该报道认为,科技公司用Alexa、Siri等传统女性名字为语音助手命名,这样的做法也强化了对于女性的刻板印象。比如,据《周刊报道》杂志报道,在挪威语中,Siri意为“一位引领你走向成功的美丽女子”。

The stereotypes caused by female voice assistants have raised concerns.
这种由女性语音助手所导致的刻板印象已经引发了关注。

“Stereotypes do matter because they come back to affect how young girls and young women see themselves and the way they have dreams and aspirations for the future. It’s almost like going back to the image of women that was held in the 1950s or 1960s,” UNESCO’s gender equality director, Saniye Gulser Corat, told Time magazine.
“刻板印象的确影响重大,因为它们会再度影响年轻女性看待自己的方式,以及她们未来的梦想与志向。这种刻板印象几乎退回到了上世纪50、60年代所认为的女性形象,”联合国教科文组织性别平等部负责人萨尼耶·居尔瑟·克拉特在接受《时代周刊》杂志采访时如此表示。

It’s believed that the problem is a result of the fact that there are not so many women workers in the tech field.
人们认为,这一问题源于科技领域女性员工不多的现实因素。

Currently, 80 percent of AI professors are men, while just 15 percent of AI research workers at Facebook and 10 percent at Google are women, according to a New York University report in April.
据纽约大学今年四月的一项报告显示,如今,80%的人工智能教授为男性,在脸书或谷歌就职的人工智能科研人员中,分别只有15%和10%为女性。

“These mistakes happen because you do not have the diverse teams and diversity of thought,” Allison Gardner, a co-founder of Women Leading in AI, a UK think tank, told The New York Times.
“这些误解之所以会产生,是因为公司内部没有多元化的团队和想法,”英国智库“女性引领人工智能”共同创始人之一的艾利森·加德纳在接受《纽约时报》采访时如此表示。

To deal with the problem, some technologists have been designing a genderless digital voice, reported BBC News. The report also calls for more women to be involved in the tech field.
据英国广播公司新闻频道报道,为了解决这一问题,一些技术专家正在设计一款中性的数字声音。该报告也呼吁让更多女性在科技领域占有一席之地。

“A more gender-equal digital space is a distinct possibility, but to realize this future, women need to be involved in the inception and implementation of technology,” noted the report.
“一个性别更加平等的数字空间大有可能,但为了令这样的未来成为现实,女性需要参与科技的设想与实施,”该报告指出。

(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Ji Yuan)
http://www.i21st.cn/story/3360.html
辞海拾贝
Male  男性的
   
Artificial intelligence  AI, 人工智能
Gender bias  性别歧视
   
Docile  温顺的
Obliging  乐于助人的
   
Blunt  生硬的
Stereotypes  刻板印象
   
Norwegian  挪威语
Aspirations  愿望
   
Digital  数字的
Involved  参与
   
Inception  开始
Implementation  实施