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New Facebook Patent Would Use Your Pictures to Identify Aspects of Your Household


Facebook will never stop invading your lives, folks. Never. If they did, that would involve remembering what Facebook was meant to be when it began. Today, Facebook has so much sway, so much power that they’re seemingly willing to do whatever they can to know more about you than you do.

A patent application, filed by Facebook in May and published on Thursday, claims they have an algorithm that would identify different aspects of the pictures people post to their Facebook pages and use those aspects to “build a profile of an entire household.”

According to tech website The Verge:

The system described in the new patent would involve an even more sophisticated level of data mining. The proposed model would cross-reference details from photographs with tags, descriptions, the poster’s IP address, the list of Facebook users using that same address, and potentially other details. From this, Facebook could deduce how many people were in the household, alongside various demographic information. It doesn’t specify what that might be, although advertisers often look for data on gender, age, and socioeconomic status.

In one example, Facebook describes a male user who posts multiple pictures of two female subjects who appear repeatedly in either pictures he posts or pictures friends tag him in. One of them is a picture of a single young girl, with the description “my angel.” The system could deduce that there are three people in his household, one male and two female, and that the female members are probably his wife and daughter.

I’m sorry, but that type of recognition software is scary. I never understood why people willfully and blindly post hundreds, if not thousands of pictures to social media while still maintaining some expectation of privacy.

Your privacy is gone, and if it isn’t completely gone it’s on life support. We’ve now had over a decade of unadulterated invasions of our privacy that we all once took for granted.

There’s a saying that goes, “The internet is forever.” And while I posted many pictures in years past on social media, I matured to understand that those in charge of social media companies have no interest in your privacy.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times — If I didn’t need social media for the job I currently inhabit, you would never see me on social media again. I’m not saying that people need to leave social media en masse. What I am suggesting is that people be a little more careful with the content they post on social media platforms.

You never know who’s watching, and for what reason, until it’s too late.

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