Facial recognition used to strip adult industry workers of anonymity

As if we don’t already have enough - dystopia, someone’s claiming to have used the technology to match the faces of porn actresses to social media profiles in order to “help others check whether their girlfriends ever acted in those films.”

… because what more noble thing could possibly be done with powerful FR technology, programming skills, an abundance of spare time, access to the internet and a lot of computing power?

He could, for example, use the technology to actually help people, instead of shaming them and exposing them to creeps and stalkers – for example, by identifying and (privately) notifying women who’ve been victimized by sextortionists, or revenge porn antagonists, or the operators of hidden webcams, or by partners who post intimate videos or images without their partners’ knowledge or permission, or who’ve never appeared in intimate photos or videos at all but who’ve still been convincingly depicted in DeepFakes ..?

Facial could be used to inform such victims, so they could act to stop the privacy invasion and/or stalking or whatever harm it’s caused. But that’s not what this guy had in mind.

“More than 100,000 young ladies”

The programmer in question claims to have “successfully identified more than 100,000 young ladies” in the industry “on a global scale.” He’s a user of the Chinese social media app Weibo and claims to be based in Germany. He said that this is all legally kosher, given that sex work is legal in Germany and that he’s been keeping the data safely tucked away.

Commenters noted that while sex work is indeed legal in Germany, there are strict laws about privacy that make what the he claims to be doing and, mind you, these are just claims, as there’s no proof he’s done it at all emphatically illegal.

Motherboard independently verified the translations of the Weibo user’s posts that were posted to Twitter by Yiqin Fu, a Stanford political science PhD candidate.

The posts have gone viral in both China on Weibo and in the US on Twitter and have given rise to heated discussion about the implications with regard to privacy, technology and misogyny.



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