Digital discrimination

Fixing Discrimination in Online Marketplaces

In the late 1980s, law professors Ian Ayres and Peter Siegelman set out to learn whether blacks and women got the same deals as white men when buying a new car. They trained 38 people—some white and some black, some male and some female—to negotiate a purchase using a fixed script, and uncovered disturbing differences: Across 153 dealerships, black and female buyers paid more for the same cars than white men did, with black women paying the most—on average, nearly $900 more than white men. Although the findings weren’t a surprise to most people, least of all to blacks and women, they were a compelling demonstration of just how discriminatory markets can be. ….[READ]

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