Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
January 11, 2018

Fire and Fury Baked In: Our Visual Roundup of the Week

Photo: Doug Mills/ New York Times Caption: Donald Trump's hands are seen as he listens to members of congress discuss Immigration reform in the Cabinet Room of the White House.

By now, Trump is painfully predictable. Any screw up or PR disaster and he’s falling all over himself to prove the opposite. Except, these make-up gestures make him look even worse. Still reeling from the picture of Donald solidified in Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury,” Trump was scrambling this week to look more competent and informed. Letting the camera role, 45’s mangled management of an impromptu immigration summit drove home how much concepts elude him, even if presidential branding does not. The fact he didn’t seem to know the National Anthem at the college football championship after all his gridiron “patriotism bashing” didn’t help either.

In other pictorial news, the Golden Globes proved a powerful moment for women activists in Hollywood. (If you missed it, see our post on visual reactions to Oprah’s powerful speech.) California continues to reel from climate change-related disasters. And, in still another sign of cultural shift (“Sorry, Jeff!”), pot is now legal in California. May it put a dent in Big Pharma’s deadly opioid sales.

We all feel the tension around surveillance: how it protects until it compromises. We also get that technology, including facial recognition, is making it more invasive by the day. Still, because we’re conflicted, and because it’s invisible, we don’t think about it much. That’s why a picture like this is so chilling. We see it in a glance. Just like big brother. (-Michael Shaw)⠀ …⠀ Reposting @washpostphoto. Photograph by Gilles Sabrié (@gillessabrie):⠀ ⠀ “Facial recognition is the new hot tech topic in China. Banks, airports, hotels and even public toilets are all trying to verify people’s identities by analyzing their faces. But the police and security state have been the most enthusiastic about embracing this new technology.⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ It’s part of an ambitious plan, known as “Xue Liang,” which can be translated as “Sharp Eyes.” The intent is to connect the security cameras that already scan roads, shopping malls and transport hubs with private cameras on compounds and buildings, and integrate them into one nationwide surveillance and data-sharing platform.⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ It will use facial recognition and artificial intelligence to analyze and understand the mountain of incoming video evidence; to track suspects, spot suspicious behaviors and even predict crime; to coordinate the work of emergency services; and to monitor the comings and goings of the country’s 1.4 billion people, official documents and security industry reports show.⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ Read our full report on⠀ ⠀⠀ #AI #facialrecognition #china” #surveillance #politics #perception #security #securitystate #scanning #technology #video #evidence #data #faces #identity #identification

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Photo: Doug Mills via Twitter. Caption: Donald Trump hands are seen as he listens to members of congress discuss Immigration reform in the Cabinet Room of the White House. January 9, 2018.

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