Everybody puts their pictures online. Picasa, flickr, you just name them. But what if your friend puts a picture with YOU on it online? Cue the IDPS (IDentity Protection System), a sticker you wear that “tells” a camera taking a snapshot of you to blur out your face.
(Found at the YaHoo Design week.)
If it works, this may be a good thing, because at the other side of the spectrum, there is Polar Rose, a browser plugin that lets you discover who is in any public photo. They’re in beta right now, but just imagine someone having a picture of you, and then using Polar Rose to find pictures of you all over the internet (even the ones you don’t know of, and/or don’t want others to know about).
I personally think the IDPS system has more value in highlighting to people the issues surrounding public space and pictures, than it has practical value.
The approach that we are taking is talking to various privacy groups about one of them maintaining a black-list of people who don’t want to be programatically recognized. It won’t be easy but we’ll do our best effort to make it work on our side.
ps. It’s sort of ironic that IDPS needs computer vision technology like ours to work at all. 😉