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Disneyland General
Topic: Is this true?

Sun 8/19/2012 9:50a
I haven't been to DL since 2008, so I can't say it's BS, even though I'm pretty sure that it is.

Anyway, saw this posted in another (non Disney) blog:

"A software engineer in my Facebook community wrote recently about his outrage that when he visited Disneyland, and went on a ride, the theme park offered him the photo of himself and his girlfriend to buy – with his credit card information already linked to it. He noted that he had never entered his name or information into anything at the theme park, or indicated that he wanted a photo, or alerted the humans at the ride to who he and his girlfriend were – so, he said, based on his professional experience, the system had to be using facial recognition technology. He had never signed an agreement allowing them to do so, and he declared that this use was illegal. He also claimed that Disney had recently shared data from facial-recognition technology with the United States military."

Can anyone say if this is baloney?
Sun 8/19/2012 9:58a
Never mind, it's already been debunked.
Sun 8/19/2012 4:16p
Yup, even in today's hi-tech world that story is pretty tough to believe. Not surprising that it has already been "debunked".
Sun 8/19/2012 4:56p
I've always wonder tho if they do use FRT at the gates for banned people.
Mon 8/20/2012 3:35p
Links. Links would have been nice.

Here's the original "news" story, by Naomi Wolf:

Here's what she based it on (a Facebook thread):

And here's the gist:
A computer programmer named Jim Coffey entered Disneyland, used a PhotoPass, and was shocked when he and his girlfriend were later "identified" in another FP location, along with his credit card information. He assumed there was Facial Recognition Technology (FRT) in use without his consent, even going so far as to claim that Disney was "following" the pair through the Resort.

Mass hysteria ensues. Bear in mind, this was all posted last April. April 20 was the day he entered Disneyland, April 25 when Naomi Wolf posted this to her own Facebook. And then, on August 15 (five months later) Naomi Wolf uses this as the sexy hook for an article about the horrors of FRT, including the ominous warning that Disney may be sharing their awesome tech with the US military.

BUT... what Ms. Wolf failed to do was read the full set of responses on her own FB page. If so, she would have seen this item, posted on APRIL 26 by Jim Coffey (you know, the computer programmer who was contacting lawyers to fight Disney's despicable abuse of his rights):
"You have to admit when you were wrong, and I was in this case. My girlfriend is from Mexico and doesn't speak English. We had a miscommunication and it turns out Disney did give us another card. I just found the other one in my truck with the correct photo attached.

I sincerely apologize for all of this, this is 100% my fault, and I will definitely be more careful in the future with what I write."

In other words, Disney did not employ FRT to "follow" anyone. It was just Photopass cards and a misunderstanding between a guy and his girlfriend.

BUT... Naomi Wolf still writes the article, citing the original claim (now debunked by the very guy who made it), five months later.

Tue 8/21/2012 6:15a
Such is the state of "journalism" these days...
Tue 8/21/2012 12:34p
That was pretty much the debunking I found.
Tue 8/21/2012 12:38p
You had me at post #2. ;-)
Tue 8/21/2012 1:18p

Having just renewed, I can tell you that the time will be here shortly where most of this will be true. If you enter with an annual pass or a pass that was purchased with a credit card, the time is coming very soon where all you will have to do is swipe your annual pass or other type of media and the card that was used will be charged. Cruise ships already do a form of this type of transaction.
Tue 8/21/2012 1:40p
As it stands, at WDW, if you buy your park admission through your hotel, or as part of a package, you get one card that serves as your room key, your park admission, and (optionally) a way to charge purchases to your room. And it's been that way at least since 2001.

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