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  • Emma Lake Boydston

Facial Recognition is Everywhere

Not to sound too dystopian, but cameras with facial recognition seem to be everywhere, with the latest surprise being in a vending machine. A student at Waterloo University in Canada snapped a picture of an error screen on an M&Ms vending machine, showing that a facial recognition app was being used by the machine. The company responsible for the vending machine said that the software was only used to recognize the presence of a person, and their estimated age and gender. But students were up in arms about the lack of permission and questioned why a vending machine needed this information. The school announced that the vending machines were being removed for the time being. In our opinion, we’re generally not against technology being used to facilitate a transaction, but when the type of technology (facial recognition) is highly unexpected in that particular area (vending machines) it should be clearly disclosed.

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