SceneTap smartphone app is receiving complaints from female bar customers after they realized the program has the potential to stalk them and send creepy guys to the locations where the most women are in abundance.
Receiving favorable early reviews the SceneTap app works by using facial-detection software and cameras placed strategically around bars and nightclubs. The app then tells users the age and gender makeup of each establishment.
The biggest complaint so far is that not all users are aware they are being video recorded, something one privacy advocated called just plain “creepy” and an “invasion of privacy.”
The SceneTap application is installed in bars from San Francisco, California; Austin, Texas; Athens, Georgia; Bloomington, Indianapolis; Chicago; Gainesville, Florida, and Madison, Wisconsin.
After using facial-detection to estimate information about bar and nightclub customers the app created a rundown of ages and sexes which is provided to users in real-time.
On the one hand the app can send customers to meet up with other bar and nightclub attendees that match their age and sex preference, on the other hand some women worry that creeps will hunt them down like prey.
According to SceneTap CEO Cole Harper in an interview with The Week the app is simply meant to help people find the crowd they are looking for, avoiding the type of prospects that might leave them feeling they are in the wrong “scene” for their lifestyle.
In San Francisco so many complaints have been filed that several bars which had agreed to the program chose to back out.
Another app, “Girls Around Me”, suffered a close down after similar complaints were given by various mobile app using females.
According to Cole Harper, the SceneTap app won’t collect any user information. He tells The Week: “It’s not recorded, it’s not streamed, it’s not individualized. You actually give up more information when you hand a bouncer your ID at the door.”