Some bands think facial recognition at concerts is a step too far. And they have teamed up with digitals rights group Fight for the Future to call Ticketmaster to ban it.
Ticketmaster is the parent company of Live Nation which have invested in a company called Blink Identity, which is a facial recognition company, and the aim of this is to replace tickets at events. For example, facial recognition was used at Taylor Swift’s 2018 Rose Bowl performance to search the crowd for known stalkers.
How does it work? A CCTV scans your face and it links you to a digital ticket. The company argued that it allows for shorter queueing time.
But Fight For The Future sees it as a risk to privacy and has launched a campaign to oppose the use of this new technology. Furthermore, the digitals right group said that the invasive innovation “puts undocumented fans, fans of color, trans fans, and fans with criminal records at risk of being unjustly detained, harassed, or judged. Music fans should feel safe and respected at festivals and shows, not subjected to invasive biometric surveillance“.
This is also what happened with Amazon‘s facial recognition technology, which failed at dissociating people of color.
Thus, Rock band, Speedy Ortiz, and former guitarist with Audioslave have vocalized their support of Fight For The Future’s ‘Ban Facial Recognition’ campaign.
Also, Tom Morello from Rage Against The Machine, known for his political activist, posted on twitter: “I don’t want Big Brother at my shows targeting fans for harassment, deportation or arrest”.
Indeed, this technology is frequently used in China, and at a recent Jacky Cheung pop concert, a man was arrested for economic crimes using the technology.
Evan Greer, deputy director of Fight For The Future used strong words against the technology, saying, “Facial recognition is one of the most authoritarian and invasive forms of surveillance ever created, and it’s spreading like an epidemic. We need to ban this technology outright, treat it like biological or nuclear weapons, and prevent it from proliferating before it’s too late“.
Facial Recognition technology is at the centre of a lot of conversation, and recently, a law to ban the technology has been in discussion in California. Join Fight For The Future’s campaign here if you would like to.