Rage Against the Machine Leads Boycott of Venues Using Facial Recognition Tech
Rage Against the Machine frontman Zack de la Rocha and guitarist Tom Morello are among a list of 100 artists and venues taking a stand against facial recognition being used at live events.
This effort was organized by Fight For The Future, an activist organization that aims to fight the use of various technologies that identify and track people for unethical surveillance purposes. Notably, New York’s Madison Square Garden has been using facial recognition “to identify, track, and kick fans out of events,” according to Fight For The Future.
💥100+ artists have pledged to boycott venues like @TheGarden that use #FacialRecognition at shows. Signers include @tmorello, @ZackdelaRocha, @wheatus, @BootsRiley, @BedouineMusic, @jillsobule, @anti_flag, @deerhoof, @sad13, @YACHT, @mirahmusic 1/9 https://t.co/nFa3h8a4CG— @email@example.com on Mastodon (@fightfortheftr) June 22, 2023
Rolling Stone notes MSG has previously kicked lawyers out of its venue that has been involved with ongoing litigation with the venue’s parent company. In addition to MSG, other venues that have used facial recognition technology include New York’s Citi Field, FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Hard Rock Stadium in Miami and Pechanga Arena in San Diego.
Fight For The Future recognizes New York City Council member Shahana Hanif. She has introduced a bill to ban the use of facial recognition technology for business.
“Facial recognition technology doesn’t keep us safe; it perpetuates racist biases and commodifies our biometric data,” said Hanif. ” … I am thrilled to see so many venues and artists show their support for banning the use of biometric surveillance. Our opponents claim that this technology is essential to safety in the public arena, but this support proves that it’s the very businesses being marketed this technology that intimately understands its inherent dangers.”
More information on this effort can be found at BanFacialRecognition.com.