Technology folks often talk about “early adopters”: those who are the first to see opportunity in new technology. Frontline communities know — racism and inequality are the original early adopters, they take the first seats at the table anytime we create something new, and they’ve turned technology into a tool that increases systemic disparities.
Let’s say that again:
Technological advances increase disparities between the haves and have nots; during these advances, the privileged dominate, the vulnerable are exploited or ignored.
We must invest in communities on the frontlines of technological change so they can lead us to a just and community-centered digital future.