How does Facebook use facial recognition?
Facebook has used the countless photos that people have added to their profiles and feeds to build a huge database of faces, which has allowed it to be able to identify individuals using facial recognition technology.
In December 2010, the social media platform introduced a feature that could automatically identify people who appeared in uploaded photos. Users would be prompted to click to confirm identities of people in their photos and they would be “tagged,” linking the photo to profiles. Facebook says one-third of users are opted in to this feature.
Facial recognition is also used to identify impersonation accounts and help the visually impaired know who is in a photo.
Why is Facebook ending its facial recognition program?
The company says it wants to limit its use because there are “many concerns about the place of facial recognition technology in society,” with regulators struggling to keep up with the tech’s development.
This comes shortly after the release of documents known as the Facebook Papers, which paint Facebook as a company that knows about certain harmful effects of its services but has failed to take sufficient action to mitigate these effects.