Ethical Issues with Social Media and the Development of Facial Recognition Software By IFSM 304 11/6/2016 Ethical Issue
With the ever-growing popularity of online social outlets one ethical dilemma seems to be continuously re-emerging. Who owns the data you post online? The question seems to be an obvious one to answer if you created the material, you are the one who owns it. But the underlying reality is that the platform you post images, video and information to, retains the right to do whatever they want to do with it. Although the material is technically the users, the control is left to the company who designed the platform and any other possible interested parties. “ Even if you own the content you’ve created, you may, by agreeing to the terms of a site, be granting that site a license to use your posts” (Boothroyd, 2015). Out of this ownership dilemma comes an even larger one which I shall address here. The rapid advancing pace of technological development has given way to so-called Artificial Intelligence (AI) programs capable of facial recognition comparable to that of a human. The development of such systems has placed an interesting spin on privacy, anonymity and company data mining with Facebook being at the forefront of the development and the controversy. I envision several scenarios which can be addressed through the same analysis framework. You notice a beautiful looking man or woman in a bar, quickly snap a secret photo of their face and upload it in a search feature capable of connecting you to that person’s online information as well as social circles. You stop at a monitor in your local grocery store which is playing an advertisement for a new product. Unbeknownst to you, the monitor also has embedded cameras which are capturing your facial expressions, eye movements and has also accurately identified you from your social networking site and previous purchases. “ Incorporated into next- generation TVs by way of a webcam, this technology could potentially be used to monitor viewer engagement levels with whatever entertainment is placed in front of them” (Dormehl, 2014). Law enforcement arrives at your door. You have been misidentified by video surveillance as a suspected criminal. The use of such information has the impact to affect every one of us including non- users as there is no bias as to who is identified.
- Fall '09
- facial recognition software, facial recognition