Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Privacy Google Technology

Through a Face Scanner Darkly 336

Posted by samzenpus
from the I-know-you dept.
An anonymous reader writes in with a story that raises the issue of how public anonymity is quickly disappearing thanks to facial recognition technology. "NameTag, an app built for Google Glass by a company called FacialNetwork.com, offers a face scanner for encounters with strangers. You see somebody on the sidewalk and, slipping on your high-tech spectacles, select the app. Snap a photo of a passerby, then wait a minute as the image is sent up to the company's database and a match is hunted down. The results load in front of your left eye, a selection of personal details that might include someone's name, occupation, Facebook and/or Twitter profile, and, conveniently, whether there's a corresponding entry in the national sex-offender registry."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Through a Face Scanner Darkly

Comments Filter:
  • Soon, there will be other heads-up displays. This is one of the more useful applications for them. I'm looking forward to seeing how well it works.

    • by feufeu (1109929) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @09:59PM (#46137121)
      I want to be able to meet someone and get to know him/her by actually talking to him/her.

      And no, I don't give a fuck about sex offender list crazyness.

      I do not want *anybody* to tell me who i should be afraid of or not.

      • I want to be able to meet someone and get to know him/her by actually talking to him/her.

        And no, I don't give a fuck about sex offender list crazyness.

        I do not want *anybody* to tell me who i should be afraid of or not.

        What's stopping you?

        • by feufeu (1109929) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:17PM (#46137251)
          Nothing, for now.

          Everyone wearing stupid Google glasses, in a dystopian future.

          I hope I am not the only one here who would have an awkward feeling if I knew that someone I meet just did at least the equivalent of a Google search on me before we even talk.

          • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:47PM (#46137401)

            I work with a registered sex-offender. The reason why this guy works for us is because he was grandfathered in before the company started doing background checks, and we don't see a reason to let him go since he is in compliance with the law and does his job really well.

            You can look him up and see his face and everything, again, he's fully compliant. Most importantly, though, we don't hold his past against him because his offense was something like "Intent of Sexual Assault," which is something that any cheating or otherwise regretful whore could have fabricated after leading a man on while in a drunken stupor before her boyfriend found out and gave her an ultimatum.

            Of course, the whole registry thing is simply to convince suburban housewives that evil is always lurking around the corner, and that they should be perpetually afraid of events with little statistical significance. But we're not talking about terrorism, this time.

            -- Ethanol-fueled

            • by sumdumass (711423) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @11:50PM (#46137703) Journal

              Of course, the whole registry thing is simply to convince suburban housewives that evil is always lurking around the corner, and that they should be perpetually afraid of events with little statistical significance. But we're not talking about terrorism, this time.

              I hate to say this but a lot of people on the registered offender lists might be innocent of what you or I would consider a sexual offense. I know of a person who stopped to take a piss on the way walking home from a bar and because it was close to a school (which was empty because it was 3 am), he had to fight charges that would have put him on the list. I think it cost him around $25k in lawyers and fighting the charges in order to not be on the list. I know of another, an 18 year old kid who was dating some chick in his math class (high school). They dated since he was 16 but she was more then 2 years difference in age so when he turned 18, a concerned neighbor turned them in and he went up on statutory gross sexual imposition charges which definitely put him on the list. The neighbor, who after discussing ways to please a man with this 15 year old girl, was appalled to find out her boyfriend of 2 years was 18 years old now and she wouldn't be 16 for another 3 months so she promptly reported the situation to children's protective services. He was a good kid and everyone who knew them went in as character references during the trial but it didn't seem to matter as it was a statutory thing and the judge's hands were tied (so he said).

              They have changed the law a bit in the years since then, but if it happened that easily, I'm sure there are more people wearing the label that do not deserve it. There are likely a lot of people who do deserve it, but I'm not sure the classifications are rational enough to be concerned over someone who has to register.

              • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Monday February 03, 2014 @12:01AM (#46137771)
                In some states you don't even have to be near a school. And there are other things that can get you on the list.

                For example: you live in a state where the age of consent is 16, but you live near the border with a state where it is 18. (Yes, it is 16 in some states and in others lower still.) You go across the border on a weekend to go boating, or skiing, or something... forgetting where you are, you get caught by somebody in an intimate situation.

                You guessed it... a lifetime on an offender registry for doing something that would have been perfectly legal just a mile away.
            • by xenobyte (446878)

              That kind of offenses should not even be registered as a sex offender offense.

              Rape, kid abduction, kiddie-porn and similar - yup, those people doing that are real sex offenders.

              All other may still have committed a crime related to sex, but they're not real sex offenders and should not be registered as such.

              • by weilawei (897823)
                I'm not sure why you lumped in child abduction. That's commonly called kidnapping. Parents of children are found guilty of it all the time, when they decide to take their kid to the park for a day and the other one gets upset, even if it had previously been arranged by all parties involved. Custody disputes happen. None of it has anything to do with sex. Having sex with a minor is already illegal--why do you need to use a law against vanishing a person against their will/consent to make your point? That asi
          • by nospam007 (722110) *

            "I hope I am not the only one here who would have an awkward feeling if I knew that someone I meet just did at least the equivalent of a Google search on me before we even talk."

            How about the awkward feeling that he googles you just after you talked?
            Is that slightly better?
            If there's something bad to learn about you, you're out of luck, no matter when you are googled.

             

      • I think you're confused about the fact this is not a requirement. You don't need to buy these things. You can't actually buy Google Glass yet anyway.

        You're safe.

        • by noh8rz10 (2716597)

          no, the point is that other people will wear them and scan you without your consent or ability to prevent, absent wearing a mask like michael jackson or ripping the glasses of their faces.

      • by nospam007 (722110) *

        This will evolve into Google Glass for Cops and Google Glass for Homeland Security.

  • Face identified! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    By donning your Glasshole Identifier, your face will also be immediately recognizable as belonging on the National Pervy Googler Registry, to be shunned by all decent company.

  • Snap a photo of a passerby...

    Doing this is what makes you a Glasshole.

  • fake data (Score:5, Interesting)

    by manu0601 (2221348) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:01PM (#46137131)
    Perhaps we should start posting fake profiles with random data to make the thing unusable?
  • Soon everyone is going to want to look like a movie start hiding from the paparazzi.

    Ski masks, they're not just for bank robbers any more..

  • by The Optimizer (14168) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:05PM (#46137155)

    because no one would misuse this tech to act creepy.

    True story:

    Back around 1989 I was maintaining a minicomputer system for a small chain of Auto Body Shops near Ft. Worth Texas. I got to know a lot about how the business works and made friends with some of the VERY blue collar guys who sanded, welded, painted and whatnot.

    At that time the body shop had dedicated terminal that could dial up the Texas DMV database and retrieve the registration info for a given license plate. On at least two separate occasions I observed one of the shop guys using the terminal to get the name and address of a car they observed that was driven by an attractive woman. Nothing creepy or potentially dangerous there? Yeah.

    Maybe we should study CCTV operators in England to make sure that attractive women, or any other category of people, aren't being watched more closely than everyone else.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:16PM (#46137233)

      Maybe we should update our privacy laws and stop allowing companies and the government to store all this information about us in shitty databases to begin with.

      • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:41PM (#46137357)

        Maybe we should update our privacy laws and stop allowing companies and the government to store all this information about us in shitty databases to begin with.

        This.

        When even the cops use these databases on on other cops [sophos.com] you know the only solution is to stop building the databases in the first place.

        Stalking pretty girls makes for a good visceral story, but the larger problem is one of political repression -- essentially using these databases to make it harder for political upstarts to instigate change, basically co-opting democracy.

        BTW, that same database the cops used to stalk other cops? Also used to stalk political candidates. [reason.com]

      • "Maybe we should update our privacy laws and stop allowing companies and the government to store all this information about us in shitty databases to begin with."

        Or maybe we should come to the realization that privacy laws don't work in any context, and get rid of these types of database except when absolutely necessary. Much more importantly do not allow access to any of these any super-duper ultra absolutely necessary.

        Sorry I ran out of superlatives.

  • Great.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by epyT-R (613989) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:06PM (#46137169)

    Great, anther toy encouraging society to regress back to adolescent behavior...with much higher stakes.

    • Re:Great.. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by UnderCoverPenguin (1001627) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @11:03PM (#46137469)

      Great, anther toy encouraging society to regress back to adolescent behavior...with much higher stakes.

      The stakes may be higher than some people think. Over thepast few years, several people I casually know (that is, I only know them by face and first name) have expressed the opinion that the sex offender list is a license to hunt and kill. How many people with similar names are going to get "tagged" by this service?

      • Re:Great.. (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Belial6 (794905) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @11:30PM (#46137593)
        That is obviously what the lists were designed for. The fact that I can check to see if my neighbor is a "Sex Offender", but I can't look up to see if he has eaten babies, bit by bit over the course of months while they were still alive, pretty well proves to me that the list was not about protecting yourself. It was designed as a way issue the death penalty without having to deal with all of the political and judicial red tape.
  • There's a simple solution to this registry. If everyone takes a photo of their naughty bits and sends it to the police station the sex-offender registry will soon be full of nearly all 314 million Americans.

    A positive side effect of this is that your glasses will now identify the remaining ultra conservatives who may be far more dangerous.

  • "Pubic anonymity disappearing due to facials".

  • 2 things (Score:5, Insightful)

    by memnock (466995) on Sunday February 02, 2014 @10:46PM (#46137397)

    1. Fuck you very much, facialnetwork.com and any other company that wants to deanonymize everyone.

    2. Why the sex offender registry for starters? Is facialnetwork.com trying to scare everyone into thinking that the country is overrun by sex offenders? You can piss in an alley (not that that's generally a pleasant thing) and end up on a list with people who have committed violent sexual assaults. To me there is a huge gap in the moral turpitude between the two. The latter of the two examples is probably someone to be weary of, but I don't know if the former is necessarily someone any worse than someone who uses illegal drugs.

  • ... is Guy Fawkes.

  • wear sunglasses.
  • HI Joe. Who the fuck are you? Well I see you have been looking online for a car, and now you are in our car lot. I see you were at 3 other dealers looking at electric cars and I'd like to show you. Get the fuck away from me, I see you got a price of 38,999 for the car across the road. I'm afraid I can't do any better than that. How the hell do you know that. Oh It was recorded in your google glasses. Yeah, I want that.
  • by mwvdlee (775178) on Monday February 03, 2014 @03:43AM (#46138673) Homepage

    Marking complete strangers as sex offenders based on lookup of a name found using facial recognition... what could possibly go wrong?

  • The results load in front of your left eye

    I thought most if not all Google Glasses were right-eye.

  • by Chrisq (894406) on Monday February 03, 2014 @06:15AM (#46139101)
    because the enemy hide in burkas. [theguardian.com]

Make headway at work. Continue to let things deteriorate at home.

Working...