Facebook Is Backing Away From Facial Recognition. Meta Isn’t.

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    An anonymous reader quotes a report from Vox: Facebook says it will stop using facial recognition for photo-tagging. In a Monday blog post, Meta, the social network’s new parent company, announced that the platform will delete the facial templates of more than a billion people and shut off its facial recognition software, which uses an algorithm to identify people in photos they upload to Facebook. This decision represents a major step for the movement against facial recognition, which experts and activists have warned is plagued with bias and privacy problems. But Meta’s announcement comes with a couple of big caveats. While Meta says that facial recognition isn’t a feature on Instagram and its Portal devices, the company’s new commitment doesn’t apply to its metaverse products, Meta spokesperson Jason Grosse told Recode. In fact, Meta is already exploring ways to incorporate biometrics into its emerging metaverse business, which aims to build a virtual, internet-based simulation where people can interact as avatars. Meta is also keeping DeepFace, the sophisticated algorithm that powers its photo-tagging facial recognition feature. “We believe this technology has the potential to enable positive use cases in the future that maintain privacy, control, and transparency, and it’s an approach we’ll continue to explore as we consider how our future computing platforms and devices can best serve people’s needs,” Grosse told Recode. “For any potential future applications of technologies like this, we’ll continue to be public about intended use, how people can have control over these systems and their personal data, and how we’re living up to our responsible innovation framework.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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