Is Facebook Photo Tagging Invasive?

Is Facebook Photo Tagging Invasive?


Darren Kavinoky, Squaw Valley May 2016

Darren Kavinoky, Squaw Valley May 2016

Posting a pic on Facebook today? Facebook will probably “see” the people in your photo and place a square around there faces to indicate recognition.
It will then likely ask you if you would like to “tag” your “friends.” It may even suggest which “friend” it thinks should be tagged in each highlighted square.
While many enjoy this feature and the convenience of it, there is a legal lawsuit challenging the technology used to enable this function.
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Is Facebook Photo Tagging Invasive?

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More on the Facebook privacy case

Key quotes and points below are from the United States District Court Northern District of California transcripts retrieved via

1. Case is being heard by District Judge James Donato.

2. The plaintiffs allege defendant Facebook has “unlawfully collected and stored biometric data derived from their faces.”

3. The issue at hand: “If the program ‘recognizes and identifies one of the faces appearing in [a] photograph, Facebook will suggest that individual’s name or automatically tag them.’ Id. In effect, the program puts names on the faces in photos and prompts users to tag those individuals.”

4. Facebook asked the Court to dismiss the case. Facebook has argued that, “plaintiffs have failed to state a claim under BIPA and that a California choice-of-law provision in its user agreement precludes suing on an Illinois statute.”

5. The court rejected Facebook’s motion to dismiss the case. “The Court finds that Illinois law applies and that plaintiffs have stated a claim under BIPA.”

6. “This order resolves the motion to dismiss and the motion for summary judgment. All previously unaddressed evidentiary objections are overruled and plaintiffs’ request to defer summary judgment under Rule 56(d) is denied.”

Facebook Photo Tagging

Wondering how to opt out? Facebook has an option for that.
“How can I turn off tag suggestions for photos of me?”

Darren Kavinoky
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