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Racism in the Machine: Visualization Ethics in Digital Humanities Projects.
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Data visualizations are inherently rhetorical, and therefore bias-laden visual artifacts that contain both explicit and implicit arguments. The implicit arguments depicted in data visualizations are the net result of many seemingly minor decisions about data and design from inception of a research project through to final publication of the visualization. Data workflow, selected visualization formats, and individual design decisions made within those formats all frame and direct the possible range of interpretation, and the potential for harm of any data visualization. Considering this, it is imperative that we take an ethical approach to the creation and use of data visualizations. Therefore, we have suggested an ethical data visualization workflow with the dual aim of minimizing harm to the subjects of our study and the audiences viewing our visualization, while also maximizing the explanatory capacity and effectiveness of the visualization itself. To explain this ethical data visualization workflow, we examine two recent digital mapping projects, Racial Terror Lynchings and Map of White Supremacy Mob Violence. Proposes an ethical data visualization workflow.