Achieve college student skin color diversity via image processing?

MIT has already hinted that the plan for Fall 2020 is to pocket full tuition $$ while providing students with an educational experience that fits within the screen of an iPhone 11 Pro Max. A May 15 letter from President L. Rafael Reif (first one in a while that does not feature Jeffrey Epstein!):

All of us dream of getting back to life on campus. But with Covid-19 still very active in Massachusetts, for some time to come it will only be possible to bring back a fraction of the usual campus population. … One baseline fact is that it is more feasible to bring graduate students back safely because, unlike undergraduates, nearly all live in apartments with private kitchens and baths. They can therefore practice safe distancing without enormous effort.

In other words, if you liked Zoom as a 12th grader in your taxpayer-funded high school you will love it while paying $50,000/year to MIT! Perhaps the freshmen will enjoy professors talking with a background of this photo from a recent helicopter flight with Tony Cammarata:

Back in 2018, the Economist published “The rise of universities’ diversity bureaucrats”:

AMERICAN universities are boosting spending on “diversity officials”. At the University of California, Berkeley, for example, the number of diversity bureaucrats has grown to 175 or so, even as state funding to the university has been cut. Diversity officials promote the hiring of ethnic minorities and women, launch campaigns to promote dialogue, and write strategic plans on increasing equity and inclusion on campus. Many issue guidance on avoiding sexist language, unacceptable lyrics and inappropriate clothing and hairstyles. Some are paid lavishly: the University of Michigan’s diversity chief is reported to earn $385,000 a year. What explains their rise?

Despite this boom in spending on PhDs in Comparative Victimhood, the elite colleges have failed to achieve their dreams of having 100 percent of their students fit into at least one victimhood category.

Maybe coronaplague provides a solution! If everyone is online using a video conferencing service set up by the university, the university can simply apply Justin Trudeau(TM)-brand blackface and brownface filters to whatever percentage of the students has been determined to yield an ideal learning environment.

Readers: What do you think? What better way to make a white or Asian student understand his/her/zir/their privilege than to have this person go through an entire school year with a dark skin tone? With a little more advanced technology, perhaps drawing on the Animoji codebase from Apple, students who failed to self-identify as LGBTQIA+ can be electronically forced into the transgender category.

6 thoughts on “Achieve college student skin color diversity via image processing?

  1. Just put a rainbow hue over every picture. Everybody is included in the rainbow, right? As for empty universities I was telling a friend the large state university in my town has become a dog walking park, he said that was a better use of the land. Can’t argue with that. Bunch of the lower tier colleges are already saying they will have resident students this fall, they know if they don’t they are sunk. Really they are already sunk, they would just realize it sooner if they try and go distance learning next year.

  2. Time for some Milan Kundera:

    “Just imagine living in a world without mirrors. You’d dream about your face and imagine it as an outer reflection of what is inside you. And then, when you reached forty, someone put a mirror before you for the first time in your life. Imagine your fright! You’d see the face of a stranger. And you’d know quite clearly what you are unable to grasp: your face is not you.” – Immortality

    “The basis of shame is not some personal mistake of ours, but the ignominy, the humiliation we feel that we must be what we are without any choice in the matter, and that this humiliation is seen by everyone.” – Immortality

    “Who was the real me? I can only repeat: I was a man of many faces.

    At meetings I was earnest, enthusiastic, and committed; among friends, unconstrained and given to teasing; with Marketa, cynical and fitfully witty; and alone (and thinking of Marketa), unsure of myself and as agitated as a schoolboy.

    Was the last face the real one?

    No. They were all real: I was not a hypocrite, with one real face and several false ones. I had several faces because I was young and didn’t know who I was or wanted to be. (I was frightened by the differences between one face and the next; none of them seemed to fit me properly, and I groped my way clumsily among them.)” – The Joke

    “One banned book in your country means infinitely more than the billions of words spewed out by our universities.”

  3. It’s like avatars for real life! Maybe we can look forward to a technological future where it’s possible, through your augmented reality idea, to both see others as we prefer to see them and for them to become what they choose as their identity. Then everyone can vote to decide if you get to keep your chosen identity or switch. You’ve got to put it to some kind of test, because otherwise how can you be responsible for your implicit biases?

    https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html

    [Aside: James Carville just said that Trump is going to “get his fat ass beat.” Is he fat shaming people or is he just biased against Trump? Joe Biden just said: “You ain’t Black” if you support Trump. Maybe he’s already using that technology! Later on, Biden said: “”I know a lot of weed smokers,” https://www.cbsnews.com/news/joe-biden-black-voters-trump/%5D

    If we believe that children and adolescents should be able to choose from among any of 150 or more genders, surely technology will *have* to allow us to project our chosen identities in terms of skin color or any other traits. There’s a natural market for it, companies will develop it.

    What is “authenticity” when identity is fluid and subject to change? It turns out that people write about that subject, and all we really need are the technological and psychotherapeutic means to actualize it:

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/authentic-engagement/201309/authenticity-and-identity

    “Thus, the dance for all of us is our engagement with who we thought we were and the discovery of who we are now in the moment. This will allow us to modify our old identity to a more authentic identity. This wonderful and courageous process will hopefully continue throughout our lives.”

  4. Perhaps you missed the biggest news on this. Yesterday the UC system replaced standardized tests with a questionnaire about race!

  5. What if we just made everyone appear white instead? Just apply the video filter to maintain the same whiteness for all images.

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