Thursday, June 9, 2011

Facebook Friends come Face-to-Face

DAILY DOT COM - Facebook has rolled out a new system that relies on facial recognition technology to automatically identify users in photos posted to the site and recommend people that others can tag in these images.

The technology was designed to help Facebook users mark friends in photos as they upload them to the social networking site. Facebook first introduced the technology to U.S. users in December and plans to roll it out in a few weeks.

Facebook is the largest social networking site with more than 500 million users. All of whom will be included in the database.

The system scans newly uploaded pictures and compares the faces to pictures against previously labeled photos to see if it can match any of the people. If a match is determined, Facebook alerts the person uploading the picture and invites them to tag or identify the person in the photo.

Facebook says the feature will help speed up the process of identifying and labeling people in photos. But some privacy advocacy groups are concerned that the technology goes too far. Critics are worried that people could potentially use it in the future people to search for information on any individual - just by using their picture.

If you find the system a little creepy, here’s how to disable it:

Log onto your Facebook account, choose privacy settings and click “customized settings” at the bottom of the page. Once the section opens, scroll down to a list of options called “things others share” and click on the button that reads “suggest photos of me.” You will then be given the option to enable or disable. Click "disable" then "okay" to save the setting.

Keep in mind, opting out only means you won't be tagged. Facebook's database will still know that picture is of you, because users are automatically included in the database just by having an account.