How parks in China want to blacklist ‘uncivilized’ visitors by using facial recognition

How parks in China want to blacklist ‘uncivilized’ visitors

Tourism authorities are hoping to crackdown on badly behaved visitors by using facial recognition technology and hidden cameras.

APRIL 8, 2019 2:27PM

Tourism authorities in Beijing are looking to roll out a blacklist of bad tourists to stop “uncivilized visitors” from entering — and destroying — certain areas around the city.

According to local media, Beijing park management authorities are wanting to establish a list of unruly visitors identified through artificial intelligence and facial recognition technology. The list will allow the Beijing Municipal Administration Center of Parks to curb bad tourist behaviour during events such as the three-day holidays around Tomb Sweeping Day, also known as the Qingming Festival, which has a surge in tourists visiting the city.

The facial recognition service — as well as other surveillance technology — will monitor guests and keep out those with a record of bad behaviour.

According to CNN, previous tourists have been spotted climbing peach trees, picking flowers and damaging plants during the festival period, as well as some people fishing near the lake and selling items privately in the park.

According to the Global Times, Mi Shanpo, an official at the centre, said “facial recognition” and other technologies will be used to detect uncivilized behaviour.

In 2017, another park in Beijing installed toilet paper dispensers with facial recognition to stop visitors from taking too much paper, the BBC reported.

The machines at the Temple of Heaven park scanned visitors’ faces before dispensing a fixed length strip of paper.

The machine was installed because, according to authorities, visitors would take large amounts of toilet rolls home.

Park officials said the six machines were part of a two-week trial, with staff on standby to explain the technology to visitors.

The amount of toilet paper dispensed was around 60 to 70cm per person. It is understood more paper wouldn’t be dispensed to the same person for another nine minutes.

“If we encounter guests who have diarrhoea or any other situation in which they urgently require toilet paper, then our staff on the ground will directly provide the toilet paper,” a park spokesman told Beijing Wanbao.

According to CNN, Chinese police placed 20 people with a history of bad behaviour on a blacklist in 2016, restricting their ability to travel.

The list included two people who caused a plane from Bangkok to the Chinese city of Nanjing to return halfway after they got into an argument with flight attendants. Another incident was also on board a plane, when a passenger tried to prevent an aircraft from taking off by forcing open its emergency exit.

In 2018, China’s dictatorship proposed social scorecards by which all citizens will be monitored 24/7 and ranked on their behaviour.

The Communist Party’s plan is for every one of its 1.4 billion citizens to be at the whim of a dystopian social credit system, and it’s on track to be fully operational by the year 2020.

Under the social credit scheme, points are lost and gained based on readings from a sophisticated network of 200 million surveillance cameras — a figure set to triple in 18 months.

An active pilot program has already seen millions of people each assigned a score out of 800 and either reap its benefits or suffer its consequences — depending on which end of the scale they sit.


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