What Next: TBD

Is This the End of Facial Recognition?

In the space of a week, development of the powerful surveillance technology has come to a screeching halt.


Episode Notes

This week, three of the leading developers of facial-recognition technology announced they would stop, or at least pause, selling this technology to police. The decision stems from evidence of racial bias inherent in these tools. For the researchers who first uncovered the deep-seated issues, it’s a watershed moment. Will facial-recognition technology continue to grow unchecked? Or will this week’s announcements result in lasting change?

Guest: Deb Raji, technology fellow at the AI Now Institute.


About the Show

Every Friday and Sunday, Slate’s popular daily news podcast What Next brings you TBD, a clear-eyed look into the future. From fake news to fake meat, algorithms to augmented reality, Lizzie O’Leary is your guide to the tech industry and the world it’s creating for us to live in.

All episodes


  • Lizzie O’Leary is the host of What Next: TBD, Slate’s show about technology, power, and the future. Previously, she created and hosted Marketplace Weekend. She has reported for CNN, Bloomberg News, and the New York Times Magazine, among others. She is also a contributing writer at the Atlantic.