Taylor Swift concert had facial recognition scan for stalkers

Deanna Kelley
December 13, 2018

The system, built into a kiosk showcasing rehearsal footage for Swift's Reputation tour, was meant to weed out people who threaten the pop star.

According to Rolling Stone, the screens were showing behind the scenes clips of her rehearsal.

Even though this is Taylor Swift's Reputation stadium tour, obviously she'll also be playing some of her fans' favorite hits from previous albums.

"Everybody who went by would stop and stare at it, and the software would start working", Mike Downing, chief security officer of Oak View Group, told the publication. What they didn't know is that their pictures were quietly being taken and then sent back to a command post in Nashville for analysis.

He came to the concert to witness a demonstration of the system at the invitation of the company that makes the kiosks. As The Verge points out, the legality of such surveillance is on the artist's side in the U.S., as a show is technically a private event.

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Taylor's representatives did not respond to a request for comment.

Describing themselves as "stans" - otherwise known as stalker fans, many use the term lightly, as a way to show they strongly support the artist.

Reputation, the singer's final studio album with Big Machine Records, was a record breaker for the singer-songwriter and marked her comeback after almost a full year off following hard-hitting tabloid headlines. Hoover was sentenced to ten years probation in April but was initially arrested after being spotted near the singer in October 2016, despite a restraining order prohibiting him from being near Swift.

Even though the security measures taken at Taylor Swift's event could be considered extreme, it isn't the first when facial recognition technology has been used to weed out unwanted people.

Roger Alvarado, 22, pleaded guilty to attempted burglary and criminal contempt earlier this month.

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