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100+ Musicians Band Together Against Facial Recognition Tech In Concerts


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musicians-against-facial-recognition-168 Photo 140880498 © Michele Ranchetti | Dreamstime.com


A digital rights advocacy group, Fight for the Future, is backed up by over 100 musicians against using face-scanning tech at concert venues. Among the musicians include Tom Morello and Zack De La Rocha from Rage Against the Machine, Wheatus, Boots Riley, Anti-Flag, and Downtown Boys, who are stating their stance against the potential breach of privacy with facial recognition security systems.  Facial recognition security systems have raised concerns due to their potential impact on privacy and civil liberties, often relying on vast databases of personal information and, therefore, increasing the risk of unauthorized access and misuse. There have been instances of misidentification, leading to false arrests or discrimination against individuals from marginalized communities.


NEW: 25 venues, including @houseofyesnyc & @BlackCatDC, and 100+ artists, including @tmorello, @ZackdelaRocha, @BootsRiley, @BedouineMusic & @jillsobule, have signed a pledge against #FacialRecognition at live shows. Venues, artists, fans, add your name: https://t.co/tA09HTv2Ux pic.twitter.com/ndLTEdlxmY

— @team@fightforthefuture.org on Mastodon (@fightfortheftr) June 22, 2023

According to NME, the campaign started after Madison Square Garden used facial recognition technology not to safeguard attendees but to identify and kick out lawyers going to the concert who were in the process of suing the venue. The artists and different indie venues—including Yes in Brooklyn, Lyric Hyperion in Los Angeles, and Black Cat in Washington DC—have pledged not to use such tech at their shows.  “Surveillance tech companies are pitching biometric data tools as ‘innovative’ and helpful for increasing efficiency and security. Not only is this false, but it’s also morally corrupt,” proclaimed campaigner Leila Nashashibi in a statement. “For starters, this technology is so inaccurate that it actually creates more harm and problems than it solves through misidentification and other technical faultiness. Even scarier, though, is a world in which all facial recognition technology works 100% perfectly,” the activist continued.


“In other words, a world in which privacy is nonexistent, where we’re identified, watched, and surveilled everywhere we go,” Nashashibi claimed.


 [via DIY Photography and NME, Photo 140880498 © Michele Ranchetti | Dreamstime.com]

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