A social media app is facing criticism for reportedly using artificial intelligence to include only biological women.
According to Business Insider, Giggle, a social media app founded in 2020, uses AI to determine whether a user is male or female. Transgenders aren’t included.
Some in the transgender community have spoken out against the app’s use of AI to focus on biological women.
"The way the app works is when you install it, you have to take a picture of yourself and it uses AI to analyze your face," Jenny, a “trans woman” from California, said. "And if it decides you're a woman, it will let you in. If it decides you're a man, it will reject you. But if it rejects you, you can just submit another picture."
"We wanted a place where women could go to help each other," the app’s founder, Sall Grover, told Business Insider. "A female space, in the palm of their hand. Where women could find support, connection and a refuge amongst other women no matter where they were or what they were doing."
Grover said she made the decision to exclude transgender women after some transgender women reportedly made threatening comments on the app.
"There was an orchestrated - albeit failed - attempt to get Giggle removed from the App Store and Google Play. There was some media attention, all of which called me a TERF and Giggle, Transphobic," she said.
Grover, who has been called a “TERF,” for excluding transgender women from the app, said she simply supports feminism. “TERF” is an acronym for a “trans-exclusionary radical feminist.”
"These are words that are thrown at women, on a daily basis, who stand up for our own hard-won sex-based rights," she said. "What am I supposed to do? Cower and give up my own rights? No. Never going to happen. You get over it, move on and keep going."
Victoria Morris, a “trans woman” who used the app, claimed the app also discriminates against women of different races.
She said that the app "seemed like it was harming both trans women and also a lot of women of color or that don't have the Eurocentric features that the app is really designed for."
Grover denied that the app excludes women of color and added that women who had trouble accessing the app should contact the customer support department.
"Women of every race are not just welcome on Giggle, women of every race are on Giggle," Grover said.