Thu. Jan 20th, 2022

Microsoft Office

Screenshot: Microsoft 365 / YouTube

Microsoft Office now has an “awakening” editor that will flag your writing if it contains sensitive phrases. Dumb culture war, welcome to office settings.

The software suite has acquired a feature that will call your writing to contain non-inclusive or offensive language. Similarly a spell checker finds typos and grammatical errors, this inclusion editor, Available to Microsoft 365 customers, Scan your work for inappropriate terms.

The new feature goes beyond racial slogans and will highlight when you use words or phrases containing age bias, cultural bias, sexual orientation, gender bias, racial bias, as well as gender-specific language.

Some examples include replacing “blacklist” and “whitelist” with “recognized” or “approved list”, or replacing gender-specific “postmen” with “postal workers”. Similarly, “humanity” or “mankind” is recommended “on mankind,“And” expert “are suggested when the software flags a word” master “associated with slavery. (I.n 2020, Microsoft-owned Github has removed “master” and “slave” From its website.)

We verified that the feature is already available to Microsoft 365 customers Closes by default. And rather misleadingly, Microsoft gives you the ability to turn off some inclusion features while others turn them off, so you can test it for gender bias but ignore any racial slurs. When enabled, inappropriate terms are underlined in purple and an included option is presented.

Microsoft said Daily message That spell checker may not be “suitable for all situations” and insisted that it be discontinued if necessary. When there is surely In a situation where people do not want to lean towards political purity (Say, if you quote a quote like “a small step for mankind”), you can Just ignore the purple underline.

“Microsoft understands that not every editor’s advice may be appropriate for all users and all situations,” the company told the Daily Mail. “So we let users have control over their final output. Editor is a completely optional tool that users can turn on or off at any time. The editor does not make any automatic corrections. The user has control over what suggestions they choose to use, if any. They will be able to turn each one on and off individually. ”

Looks like Microsoft is tipping, afraid of potentially angry those who consider “awakening” To be toxic, or whatever. If Microsoft wants people to know how it “wakes up”, the company should stick to its firm belief and make it a default feature that can be turned off when needed, instead of silently releasing the tool (we asked Microsoft when it first became available). ) And hide deep in the settings.

For now, to enable this feature, you need to go to the “Editor” tab of the top ribbon and select “Settings” next to the button. From there, select “Proofing” and “Settings …” then “Grammar and refinement” from the drop-down. Here, you can select which sections you want the editor to include.

The company’s productivity cloud subscription service Microsoft 365 is launching the new spelling check tool in the latest version of Microsoft Word. Unfortunately, those who use the free browser-based version or the standalone One-Payment Office 2019 will not be able to access the editor, according to the Daily Mail..

We’ve contacted Microsoft for more details on the Inclusivity Editor and will update this article when we hear back.

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