Facebook is shutting down the Face Recognition system

In the coming weeks, Facebook will shut down the Face Recognition system  as part of a company-wide move to limit the use of facial recognition in their products.

As part of this change, people who have opted in to the Face Recognition setting will no longer be automatically recognized in photos and videos, and Facebook will delete the facial recognition template used to identify them.

This change will represent one of the largest shifts in facial recognition usage in the technology’s history. More than a third of Facebook’s daily active users have opted in to the Face Recognition setting and are able to be recognized, and its removal will result in the deletion of more than a billion people’s individual facial recognition templates.

Ending the use of the existing Face Recognition system means the services it enables will be removed over the coming weeks, as will the setting allowing people to opt into the system.

This will lead to a number of changes:

  • Facebook technology will no longer automatically recognize if people’s faces appear in Memories, photos or videos.
  • People will no longer be able to turn on face recognition for suggested tagging or see a suggested tag with their name in photos and videos they may appear in.
  • This change will also impact Automatic Alt Text (AAT), a technology used to create image descriptions for people who are blind or visually impaired. AAT currently identifies people in about 4% of photos. After the change, AAT will still be able to recognize how many people are in a photo, but will no longer attempt to identify who each person is using facial recognition. Otherwise, AAT will continue to function normally, and it will work closely with the blind and visually impaired community on technologies to continually improve AAT. You can learn more about what these changes mean for people who use AAT on the Facebook Accessibility page.
  • If you have opted into our Face Recognition setting, Facebook will delete the template used to identify you. If you have the face recognition setting turned off, there is no template to delete and there will be no change.
Previous Story

Apple Music is launching on PS5

Next Story

Naomi Hirabayashi and Marah Lidey created Shine