These are questions that I did not have the answers to. So, for an introductory crash course in all things Black and AI, I called up Sinead Bovell, a tech expert and self-proclaimed “futurist” who has been very vocal about pushing for more diversity behind-the-scenes of the tech industry and forecasting what a future with AI could look like… with the right checks and balances. You may know Bovell from her work with the UN, her company WAYE Talks, her very informative social media accounts, or her popular talk show segments (last year in the midst of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, Bovell went viral for comments made on a daytime talk show about AI-generated content in Hollywood). Whether you know her work or not, or whether you agree with her or not, Bovell is a Black woman expert in the field of AI, which is rare. And she’s adamant that she’s not declaring AI as inherently one thing or another. It is tech built by humans after all, and remembering that is key, she says. If we resign ourselves to the foregone conclusion that AI is racist, or that the future is hopeless and bleak for Black folks, we are absolving those in power of their agency and clearing them of their complicity in the inequality that currently exists in the tech space. Bovell believes we can build a better future — one that includes AI — but that won’t happen by sitting on the sidelines; we have to push for it, and hold tech giants to account to make the necessary changes so that the future Bovell believes in comes to fruition.