WASHINGTON, Nov 2 – The social network Facebook will soon lose the function of recognizing faces in photo and video content, its use requires additional discussion and clear regulation, Meta said on Tuesday.
“In the coming weeks, we will turn off Facebook’s facial recognition. This will be part of a broader campaign to restrict the use of facial recognition technology in our products,” the company said in a statement.
After the changes have been made, users who have previously allowed the face recognition function on the social network will no longer be “recognized” or notified of the appearance on other people’s photos and videos. Facebook estimates that this service is used by about a third of Internet users and turning it off will remove more than a billion “custom facial recognition templates.”
“Any (new) technology brings both benefits and concerns, and we want to find the right balance for that. In the case of face recognition, there needs to be a longer and more open discussion of this issue by those who are most concerned. We will continue to participate in the discussion. and work with leading civil society and regulators in this process, “the company said.
It is not specified what exactly was the impetus for the decision to abandon the popular function, but the company statement emphasizes that “there are many concerns about the place of facial recognition technology in society.” “In light of this uncertainty, we believe that limiting its application to a narrow range of cases is warranted,” Meta said in a statement.
In the meantime, the company will “continue to work” on the use of this technology in those applications where it is possible to “ensure transparency and control of the person himself over when he allows recognition of his face.”
“The changes announced today represent the company’s abandonment of mass identification methods in favor of narrower forms of personal identification,” the company comments on the decision.