Omniveillance: Google Googles and Facial Recognition

April 25th, 2011

So is Google developing a facial recognition app that would allow you to snap a picture of someone else, and Google will tell you who he is, or not?

When Google Goggles was first announced in 2009, they mentioned facial recognition as a possible feature. In March of 2011 Google issued a quasi-denial.

Google has reached out to clarify that there are no plans to introduce functionality of this sort yet, not without “a strong privacy model in place.” More importantly, however, the linking of facial recognition to personal data is described as “inventions of the reporter” rather than something the company’s actively pursuing.

Based on today’s Times it seems they have already developed this feature, but are still “working out the privacy implications.”

Google already has the capability to recognize faces, so people could theoretically snap a photo of a blind date and pull up an online profile, but it is not yet using that technology because it is still working out the privacy implications.

Sounds like we’ll get it sooner rather than later.