back to article Lawyer mom barred from Rockettes show by facial recognition tech

A Girl Scout troop trip to see the Rockettes in New York City didn't go as planned for mom Kelly Conlon, who was turned away at the door of Radio City Music Hall because a facial recognition system pinned her as a prohibited person. The reason, Conlon told NBC New York, was because she's an associate at New Jersey law firm …

  1. Terry 6 Silver badge

    "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

    Hard to disagree.

    Words like petty and spiteful come to mind.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

      Yet, entirely legal. Call MSG petty and spiteful all you like, but they've been entirely clear and upfront and it's easy to see why they wouldn't want lawyers attending their sites. And don't forget we're not talking illegal discrimination against a protected characteristic, but completely legal discrimination with a legitimate rationale (whether you agree with it or not).

      Anyone who thinks the law firm didn't know this could happen is naïve. In fact, I'd be very surprised if they didn't *hope* this would happen: a great way to get a lot of emotional, negative publicity focused on MSG.

      1. Gene Cash Silver badge

        Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

        completely legal discrimination

        Nope, as they point out at the end of the article, their liquor license requires them to admit anyone that isn't being a disturbance. There's no loophole for keeping out "lawyers we hate"

        1. jmch Silver badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          "their liquor license requires them to admit anyone that isn't being a disturbance"

          I'm pretty sure casinos sell alcohol, yet they exclude anyone who they think will win too much money. The liquor license thing looks to me like something about which lawyers are happy to bicker over minorly varying interpretations of wording, all the while racking up enormous fees, ie could be legal, could be not, quite possibly we might get to know after a court case, appeal, appeal to the appeal, and 5 years from now a verdict will be issued at which point no one will even remember, know or care except for the lawyers on both sides fattening their purses over something completely inconsequential.

          1. Lil Endian Silver badge

            Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

            Card counting isn't a crime either, but I hear that'll get you a free hardcore manicure. Perhaps I've seen GoodFellas once too often.

          2. JimboSmith Silver badge
            Mushroom

            Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

            Liquor laws vary from state to state, so a casino in Nevada will be under a different licensing law than one in New York. Don’t know what the laws are for NY so it may be illegal to bar someone as MSG did. As the other party are lawyers you’d think they’d probably have checked this carefully.

            1. Lil Endian Silver badge

              Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

              I was thinking along the same lines. Although I'd reckon on the Right Side of the Pond, the £Corp would know its entitlement and only take a legal stance well-confident of that, or concede and settle. The UK lawyers (assuming prosecution) wouldn't bother in that situation, they'd be outed and laughed at. There are unscrupulous firms though. I really don't know, but it seems to me that on the Left Side, lawyers will create a shit storm regardless.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                On the right side of the pond licensing laws allow the staff to refuse anyone, at least they did when I worked as a barman. Drunk people rarely make much sense so the law allows you to just say no without the need to get into any argument.

                There was of course the famous case of the Fleet Street bar who refused to serve women at the bar which was found to be illegal as it's obviously sexual discrimination. But the publican could still refuse to serve the woman involved so long as he didn't say he was refusing to serve her because she was a woman.

                BTW, not happy about the use of mass surveillance tech like this.

                1. Lil Endian Silver badge

                  Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                  Yes, I was going to mention the UK law as a reference: right to refuse service regardless. Compare it to Belgium law, which is "You must allow a person entry (to a bar) unless they're drunk/abusive/etc

                  I wasn't clear in that I didn't specifically state a wider scope: my point was more about the unwillingness of UK lawyers to create a case out of nothing.

                2. gnasher729 Silver badge

                  Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                  It seems you misread the point. If they have a liquor license, they don’t have to serve liquor to everybody, but you have to let anyone have access to your premises.

                  And it should be obvious that if you don’t let a woman join her children because she happens to be a lawyer, she will be pissed off and she and her colleagues will do their best to piss you off.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                    > It seems you misread the point.

                    I would reply likewise.

                    I was answering the specific question about the licensing laws on the right sight on the pond. I know little about the terms of liquor licenses in the US other than that I know they vary from state to state and that in Vermont (& Norway) you're not allowed to be served another drink if you've already got one in front on you, so drinking in rounds slows down to the pace of the slowest drinker.

                    Still my comment was about the licensing laws in the UK.

                    Here the publican or barman can decide to exclude you without giving a reason. Here at least they aren't obliged to allow anyone in. There are parts of the country where the pubs cooperate on this and if you get banned from one you'll find that no local establishment will allow you in either.

                  2. MachDiamond Silver badge

                    Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                    "because she happens to be a lawyer, she will be pissed off and she and her colleagues will do their best to piss you off."

                    Apparently, that bout is already in progress.

                3. MachDiamond Silver badge

                  Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

                  "BTW, not happy about the use of mass surveillance tech like this."

                  It's here to stay. Many shops use it to exclude or at least obviously surveil people that have been caught or suspected of shoplifting previously. A bar may not have the same staff on duty from night to night or week to week and might use such a system to deny entry to somebody that often has a few too many and gets into fights. I worked on the door at a bar and there would be no way to maintain a list and check each person as they entered. It took time to get to know who not to let in.

                  It's just a tool and should only be used to narrow down the people that need to be looked at closer. Stores will already identify people based on Bluetooth ID's and MAC addresses from their phones.

          3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

            Liquor licenses are a state matter, so what casinos in Nevada or New Jersey or elsewhere may do is irrelevant in New York.

        2. Ideasource Bronze badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          Well a disturbance, is anything the disturbs anything, unless specifically qualified and limited which in this verbage is not.

          I'm sure it is quite disturbing to the venue and it's staff to to have an active soldier for a legal-Army offsides and deep within the Homeland of their business.

          There are natural consequences to taking sides. These lawyers enjoy many extra privileges within society . It is only fair that they accept deficit to match.

      2. jmch Silver badge

        Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

        Not sure why all the downvotes for this comment. It IS absolutely petty and spiteful to refuse entry, but I would think perfectly legal*. It's their own premises, they get to decide who enters and who doesn't. It's no difference whether it's a giant multinational or a local corner restaurant.

        *Note IANAL and the alcohol license thing seems like a spurious lawyerly argument to me, I'm talking general principle of 'my house my rules' as long as other general statutes are not violated. Working at a particular law firm is not a protected characteristic.

        1. Adair Silver badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          It is an intersting point of law, especially nowadays under 'equal opportunities' and 'anti-...ism' legislation.

          If I open my premises to 'the public' I am, perhaps, duty bound to allow the 'public' in unless I can show just and 'legal' reason why a certain individual should not be admitted.

          The mere fact that I 'don't like them' is not a just or legal reason.

          Obviously this has yet to be fought out (very expensively) in court, but the principle would appear sound.

          1. Snake Silver badge
            Big Brother

            Re: the public as "guest"

            "If I open my premises to 'the public' I am, perhaps, duty bound to allow the 'public' in unless I can show just and 'legal' reason why a certain individual should not be admitted.

            The mere fact that I 'don't like them' is not a just or legal reason."

            Not really, the premises are still privately owned and operated.

            The Covid mask issue has allowed people the erroneous assumption that inviting the public to have access in your private-owned commercial space is sacrosanct. You are a guest in any privately-owned commercial space, regardless of the fact that said space is "open to the public" for the sake of allowing access for business or pleasure. As a guest you follow the rules, whatever they may be.

            "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone".

            ------------------------------------------------

            Now, having said that, I'm not happy they use facial recognition for such things. Minority Report-style facial recognition surveillance seems just around the corner if we don't regulate and limit such things.

            1. Adair Silver badge

              Re: the public as "guest"

              I take your point, but the question will be a matter of law in the light of current legislation - not what you or I happen to think suits us, or what has applied in the past.

              Arguably the rationale you set out allows a 'business entity' to pick and choose which members of 'the public' it will allow to enter, except that it is not operating a 'private club', but an offer that is open to 'the public'. Unless an individual is known to be wanted for 'criminal activity' there is arguably no justification for that member of 'the public' to be treated any differently from any other member of 'the public'. And there is, arguably, absolutely no justification for trawling through social media profiles, or internet scrapes generally, in order to deliberately target certain individuals.

              Under modern 'equal rights' legislation operating in many countries today tit would seem likely that a pretty strong case could be argued for saying that 'open to the public' means exactly that—no ifs or buts—with the exception of anyone who is 'of interest' to the Police and security services.

        2. flayman Bronze badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          Even if the alcohol license thing has legs, that still wouldn't make it illegal. It's just potentially a reason to revoke their license to sell alcohol.

          1. JimboSmith Silver badge

            Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

            As someone who ran a venue in the USA told me “No Liquor License equals No Business so removing their license would be a huge deal for MSG.

        3. gnasher729 Silver badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          It seems like an unexpected consequence of the law, exploited by a lawyer who is pissed off.

      3. John Savard

        Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

        As noted in the article, they're in violation of the terms of their liquor license.

        Because people need to have a job to live, place of employment should be a protected characteristic; if this sort of thing is legal, then that just means there is an urgent need to amend the laws so that it is strictly illegal.

        A suitable penalty would be to allow her to collect punitive damages of the sum total of the firm's assets. That would ensure no other company would think about behaving this way in future.

    2. Justthefacts Silver badge

      Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

      Really? You want to let a *US personal injury lawyer* onto your restaurant premises who has literally been suing your firm for years? Just because she pinky promise swears she’s on personal time, and definitely won’t “slip” on a sachet of ketchup? Wow.

      1. Ian Mason

        Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

        So, do you think it would be reasonable for a nationwide supermarket chain to ban any and all lawyers from a firm that has acted against them on instructions from a client? Or would that be a way, as this clearly is, of using your commercial dominance to send a message "Dare to use you rights under the law against us and we'll punish your for it.".

        1. Justthefacts Silver badge

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          Usual answer: that depends on the circumstances. What raised my red flag is that this was an ongoing case, over many years. In other words, suing that company pays the mortgage of at least a couple of the 29 lawyers on payroll. It’s what they do, all day, for a living.

          For Your Example: suppose the firm specialises in acting for clients claiming injury from foreign bodies found in supermarket goods, and has done so over a twenty year period. It happens; presumably such cases might involve forensics = expert witnesses; I suspect there will be at least one such firm. As a supermarket, I’m not going to enable weekly fishing sweeps by lawyers through my stores - followed by once they find a sold-by mouldy jam, they immediately go find a pet client to sue on behalf of. And there’s no law that says I have to do so. If Public Health do so, that’s one thing, but enabling fishing sweeps for court cases against me is not something I have any duty to enable.

          Patent trolls exist, personal injury trolls exist. On the former, e.g. I’m selling some “clever engineering software”, and I get a “Free Trial” enquiry from a company which on closer inspection turns out to be a legal firm, not an engineering firm, and a known patent troll. Am I going to give them the software for Free Trial? No. Of course not. I’m not an idiot. So I ignore the email. and two weeks later I get another Free Trial enquiry from someone who appears to be a private individual. But something flags in my memory, and the “private individual” turns out to have the same name as the Lead QC of said patent troll. Guess what happens to that email: Ignore & Delete.

          This is absolutely no different.

        2. The Basis of everything is...

          Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

          A friend of mine is an environmental health officer. He was used to hearing certain service calls over the tannoy whenever he went into a local branch of a certain supermarket carrying his official hat and coat to do an inspection.

          It was when he started getting met withing a minute of entering other branches - even ones outside his area - by a friendly helpful manager when he was not in work clothes he started to get suspicious that perhaps the systems used to spot known shoplifters were perhaps being put to other uses too. Maybe not entirely ethical by the supermarkets, but he found the personal service was a nice way to beat the checkout queue and for quickly finding everything on his shopping list.

          As for is it legal, there are some huge loopholes under the heading of security / prevention of crime and protecting health & safety when it comes to using surveillance tech.

    3. devin3782

      Re: "This whole scheme is a pretext for doing collective punishment..."

      Petty is exactly the word, but then the world is run by small and petty men, I think MSG can add +1 to their lawsuits stat for this

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Petty is exactly the word, but then the world is run by small and petty men,

        most of whom are scumbag lawyers.

        And what job do those lawyers migrate to?

        Politicians, the majority of whom are even worse scumbags and more corrupt that the criminals that those lawyers defend or prosecute.

        Yes, I hate lawyers. The world would be a better place without 99.9999% of them.

        1. devin3782

          Re: Petty is exactly the word, but then the world is run by small and petty men,

          I believe that's called "lawful evil"

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Petty is exactly the word, but then the world is run by small and petty men,

          "The world"? You likely mean "the US" here, there's a difference, you know?

          The lawyers in my country are generally fine, so I'll keep them if it's all the same to you, thanks.

        3. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

          The 0.0001%

          "The world would be a better place without 99.9999% of them."

          The only good lawyer is my lawyer. And sometimes I'm not too sure about them.

        4. Intractable Potsherd

          Re: Petty is exactly the word, but then the world is run by small and petty men,

          You say that until you need one.

  2. Bubba Von Braun
    Big Brother

    Damm the MSG has made me feel sorry for a Lawyer!!

    So if she isnt working on the case are they trawling the companies websites for profiles, or is there some StalkBook / Linked in mining & matching going on here??

    BvB

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Meet Our Attorneys

      Meet Our Attorneys

      Find 'conlon'

      I wouldn't have thought of it as a 'honeypot', but maybe the resulting payout will cause other companies to publish more pictures of employees?

    2. Justthefacts Silver badge

      Because?

      It’s not as if the ban on these law firms was hidden in some email that nobody knew about. This was the hottest of hot gossip topics in all those law firms. They’d *already* gone to court to try and get the ban reversed. Partly because one of the senior partners didn’t like being banned from his New York Knicks season tickets that he’d had since 1976.

      https://www.abajournal.com/web/article/suit-says-madison-square-garden-misinterpreted-ethics-rules-when-it-banned-firms-lawyers-from-venues

      That lawsuit, including that firm of *just 29 lawyers* was filed weeks before any of this…..and turfed out. So a couple of weeks later, a non-partner in the same law firm tries to get in “with the Girl Guides”. It’s a setup.

      1. vtcodger Silver badge

        Re: Because?

        It's a setup

        Could be. And a quite successful one come to that. Madison Square Garden comes off looking really bad. And that's when their iffy technology actually worked as intended.

        It's probably not a good idea to gratuitously annoy lawyers. Especially not here in the US where ravenous packs of the creatures roam the streets looking for prey. Probably not anywhere on Earth really.

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "So if she isnt working on the case are they trawling the companies websites for profiles, or is there some StalkBook / Linked in mining & matching going on here??"

      I wonder if this would be a GDPR issue in the UK or EU? Mis-use of personal data collected without consent?

  3. nintendoeats Silver badge
    Big Brother

    What can we do to tell these companies that this kind of thing is unacceptable on the deepest philisophical level? I can't boycott them any harder.

    1. Notas Badoff

      You see me, I see money

      A corporation (having money) pissing off lawyers (wanting money) sounds like just the prescription for what ails us - invasive technologies.

      1. nintendoeats Silver badge

        Re: You see me, I see money

        That protects them...what about the next 18 gazillion times?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No pics of me online

    A personal policy.

    None found yet.

    I’m also not in any way interesting or popular.

    1. jmch Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: No pics of me online

      "No pics of me online"

      I've seen that mug of yours hundreds of times on this very site! I think there even was a documentary of some sort.... V something or other...

    2. LionelB Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: No pics of me online

      "No pics of me online... I’m also not in any way interesting or popular."

      Don't suppose those things might be connected (though the direction of causation may be moot)?

    3. nijam Silver badge

      Re: No pics of me online

      > I’m also not in any way interesting or popular.

      I suspect you'll find that that is no protection...

      1. martinusher Silver badge

        Re: No pics of me online

        >> I’m also not in any way interesting or popular.

        I think you'll find this is a "Martin Niemoller"** type situation. I too am boring, ordinary and unimportant.. Nobody's interested in me so I don't need to worry. By the time someone (or, more likely these days, something) it will be a bit late.

        (**See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_they_came_... )

        I'd also recommend a refresher course in "Brazil". Obviously it can't happen here...

  5. Sceptic Tank Silver badge
    Devil

    MSG Restaurant

    So that MSG restaurant sent Conlon advance warning that se would not be admitted but she went anyway? This sounds to me like Davis, Saperstein and Solomon are getting some free publicity here.

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Re: MSG Restaurant

      The terms of the liquor licence are quite interesting though. It is possible that the clearly stated terms and conditions of the ticket sale might contradict the licence, which could get MSG into trouble.

      It wouldn't be the first time a company has legally unenforceable T&Cs in a contract.

      1. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

        Re: MSG Restaurant

        Companies frequently put scary sounding rubbish in their T&Cs to scare the little people (aka consumer). Fortunately, in the UK, we have a couple of things on our side: Firstly, it's impossible to sign away your legal rights; Second: A court can invalidate (parts of) a contract if they think it's unfair.

        (This is in the context of company Vs consumer. Company Vs Company is a different ballgame)

        1. bazza Silver badge

          Re: MSG Restaurant

          Even in company-company contracts, courts will (indeed, have to) overturn terms and conditions that contradict law, though of course consumer-rights laws don't apply.

          Sometimes such contracts get mixed up with employment laws; e.g. a contract that says "no poaching" can't actually stop an employee switching between the two companies, because to do so would breach the employee's right to get a job wheresoever they wish. That employee may well be bound by non-compete or confidentiality clauses in their old contract, but that's a different matter altogether.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: MSG Restaurant

        Does a / the MSG Restaurant serve anything that not's flavoured with dubious monosodium glutamate? Why name the place after a chemical?

        1. GruntyMcPugh

          Re: MSG Restaurant

          MSG is also the acronym for the Michael Schenker Group, so dodgy rock music and induced salivation are the associations for me.

          1. Admiral Grace Hopper

            Re: MSG Restaurant

            Same here, But I Want More.

            \m/

          2. JimboSmith Silver badge

            Re: MSG Restaurant

            And Maddison Square Garden

            1. Jonathan Richards 1

              Re: MSG Restaurant

              > and Madison Square Garden

              In which case the abbreviation ought to be M*G2, shurely?

    2. myxiplx2

      Re: MSG Restaurant

      No, MSG who by the sounds of the article own multiple businesses, wrote to the law firm, who likely employ dozens if not hundreds of lawyers, to say that they're going to blanket ban all of their staff from all of their locations.

      It doesn't say they specifically told this lady in advance, or that they listed out all of their locations. They may have, but a company willing to be this petty is more likely to just send out a generic letter. Their goal is to inflict the maximum inconvenience on the staff of any lawfirm which dares sue them, so the more staff who get turned away the happier the asshole owners of MSG are.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: MSG Restaurant

        "It doesn't say they specifically told this lady in advance, or that they listed out all of their locations."

        Agreed. And I doubt her employer -- the firm in question against MSG -- bothered to forward said threat to all their employees, especially calling out that Radio City Music Hall (RCMH) was part of the ban in addition to "The Garden" itself (and potentially other locations -- I'm not a New Yohkeh who might know these things).

      2. Justthefacts Silver badge

        Re: MSG Restaurant

        They don’t employ dozens of lawyers. They employ 29. The senior partner of which had filed a court case just a month previous to overturn the ban. It’s not like nobody knew.

        1. Allan George Dyer
          Headmaster

          Re: MSG Restaurant

          @Justthefacts - "They don’t employ dozens of lawyers. They employ 29."

          That is 2.42 dozens, so it qualifies for the plural.

          See the icon.

  6. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "MSG's use of facial recognition"

    Apparently, MSG is not using facial recognition for the security of its guests, but for its own.

    How is that legal ?

    1. flayman Bronze badge

      Re: "MSG's use of facial recognition"

      "How is that legal ?"

      How is that not?

      1. flayman Bronze badge

        Re: "MSG's use of facial recognition"

        What, I'm getting down voted for pointing out the obvious? Anything is legal unless there's a law against it. What is the law against this? Find that. It appears there is not.

        1. Fr. Ted Crilly Silver badge

          Re: "MSG's use of facial recognition"

          Depends where you are in the world ...

      2. Intractable Potsherd

        Re: "MSG's use of facial recognition"

        If it is, it shouldn't be.

  7. Lil Endian Silver badge
    IT Angle

    Hmmm...

    I was going to say that Ms Conlon should be proud to be a member of the 'facial recognition true positives posse'.

    As she was "notified in advance" I suspect that the actual system used was wetware with a mugshot.

  8. Winkypop Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Yeah, nah

    You* were argumentative to a server at Sausalito McDonalds in 1996, we have a photo.

    No more Big Macs for you!

    * we think, perhaps, maybe.

    1. KittenHuffer Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Yeah, nah

      And we must say that you haven't aged a day!

    2. Lil Endian Silver badge

      Re: Yeah, nah

      we think, perhaps, maybe

      You're not suggesting that the ego of a cop-wannabe security guard would question the facial recognition software, and pass up a feel-good opportunity, are you?

      :)

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Yeah, nah

        More likely a good feel opportunity!

        Damn no Paris, she rarely objected to.....

        1. Lil Endian Silver badge

          Oh, Security!

          Lawl!

          I'm feeling a bit lonely. Can't stop...

          ...heading to my local Maccy Ds to cause a ruckus, then on to the nearest MSG venue. Let the fondle-fest begin! Cheaper than visiting the RLD, and I can remember their anguish for all time!

          Now, where's my Paris wig?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yeah, nah

      Actually, a more accurate analogy would be "someone who worked in the same company you did was argumentative..."

  9. The Axe

    Copyright & data protection

    So how did MSG get a mugshot of Ms Conlon? If they used one from her firm's website then they broke copyright. They probably also broke data protection laws by acquiring her image without her permission.

    1. Oglethorpe

      Re: Copyright & data protection

      That does seem like a stretch. MSG are not distributing the image itself and the image can be obtained for free without any sort of explicit agreement being made. I'd also say that their use is transformative, in that data is being generated from the image that is distinct from any commercial value of the original image. Google's use of thumbnails in their image search was found to be transformative and, in my view, the values that are used for facial recognition are much more abstract.

      1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

        Re: Copyright & data protection

        Remember publishing something does not invalidate copyright. The right to copy is granted, not withheld.

    2. IGotOut Silver badge

      Re: Copyright & data protection

      This is the USA. Dies that answet thevwuestion?

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Copyright & data protection

        "Dies that answet thevwuestion?"

        Replying on a smartphone I presume? :-)

    3. Lil Endian Silver badge

      Re: Copyright & data protection

      Copyright & data protection laws? Just claim (national) security and/or thinking of the children. Sorted.

      #sad-but-true

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Smells funny

    I'd be careful expressing comments either way.

    Even just reporting it is tricky, especially given that highlighting "the failure rate of facial recognition" in a case where it actually worked quite well seems a tad self-defeating... Piggy-backing NBC in giving prominence to the "mom" attribute also looks sketchy.

    And this quote in the original article does sound suspicious:

    "Taking a mother, separating a mother from her daughter and Girl Scouts she was watching over — and to do it under the pretext of protecting any disclosure of litigation information — is absolutely absurd. The fact they’re using facial recognition to do this is frightening. It’s un-American to do this."

    Does sound a bit like they went fishing for public outcry to possibly get the jurors' on their side. Allegedly. Which does not mean they ain't right. Still...

    Afaik, the only strong law against refusing service/entry is the Civil Liberties Act. Last time I checked lawyers were not a protected group.

    The denial could still be unlawful if the reason behind it is deemed "arbitrary or capricious" or whatever other creative epithet a resourceful lawyer might come up with, which might well be the case, and sounds a bit more rational than upholding the sanctity of a liquor license.

    Had one wished to be more informative about the status of the use facial recognition, you could have at least mentioned the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), still not in force in NY, which anyways regulates, rather than prohibits, the collection of biometric data.

    https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/bills/2021/A27

    Anyhow, very suspicious motives (to be clear, of the parties involved, not of the reporter), lots of IFs and BUTs and MAYBEs, very little to do with facial recognition, and too high of a tabloid-factor. I would not get emotional about it; I am afraid that if someone's going to win, it ain't going to be us either way. But then, hey, it's Christmas, there's always hope.

    1. disgruntled yank

      Re: Smells funny

      So those nasty folks at the law firm got a bunch of innocent Girl Scouts to embarrass Madison Square Garden. Terrible people, they are.

  11. flayman Bronze badge

    Perhaps immoral, but not illegal.

    The alcohol licensing aspect is interesting, but probably not relevant. And even if that turns out to be true, it still doesn't make the practice illegal. I'm having difficulty finding the relevant legislation, but a violation of the terms for issuance of a license to serve alcohol is only grounds for revoking that license. Continuing to serve alcohol without a valid license would be illegal, and the venue would surely be hurt by the prospect of losing its license.

    When someone says "how is that legal?" I can only answer "how is it not?". Unless there is a law forbidding something, doing that something is not against the law. There might be laws against blanket facial recognition use, but in the USA I have my doubts. As far as I can see right now, there is no law forbidding MSG from using facial recognition software at its events to look for a specific list of personae non gratae. Without seeing the terms of the liquor license relating to exclusion of members of the public, I couldn't make a judgement on that. I would suggest that it is at least arguable that specific persons who are known to the establishment are no longer members of the public.

    None of this is to say that there should not be a law against this sort of behaviour. Perhaps there should. That's up to the legislature. And if it turns out there is a law that catches this behaviour within the jurisdiction, then it should be ceased.

  12. disgruntled yank

    While I'm here

    I will note that the MSG is owned by James Dolan, who is an embarrassment even as American sports franchise owners go. One of the last times I heard of him, he had had a former star player for the Knicks removed from the venue in handcuffs: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Oakley#Madison_Square_Garden_arrest.

    (Note to those Over There who may be inclined to snicker at the team's name: the 19th Century writer Washington Irving invented an author named Diedrich Knickerbocker, a historian of New York. The term "Knickerbocker" was thereafter applied to residents of Manhattan, though the term dropped out of use well before my time.)

  13. User McUser

    Everybody hates lawyers...

    ...until they need one.

    1. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

      Re: Everybody hates lawyers...

      Oh, I'm sure it's possible to hate your own lawyer too, especially when paying the bill. You can also hate *needing* a lawyer, because that often reflects on either circumstances outside your control or unintended consequences of your own actions (in turn, you might hate/regret what you done did).

      Off-topic but analogous: I don't hate eating and sleeping; I hate *needing* to eat and sleep -- both are easily abused, with the former causing weight gain and the latter particularly ruining productivity. However, both can be pretty darned enjoyable, just not at the same time (I'm not a fictional lazy gluttonous orange tabby cat named Garfield).

      1. Alistair
        Windows

        Re: Everybody hates lawyers...

        (I'm not a fictional lazy gluttonous orange tabby cat named Garfield)

        You do realise that for quite a few folks, this is an aspiration?

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Everybody hates lawyers...

      I don't, but then I'm an adult.

    3. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Everybody hates lawyers...

      I guess?

      For me, needing ones just makes me hate them more, because I can never afford one and therefore the reason I need one is never made right and the perps skate away consequence free.

      So for me, I hate them less when I don't need one.

  14. Marty McFly Silver badge
    FAIL

    Liquor license

    I've dealt with this, albeit in a different state. That is a no-BS situation. The state won't hesitate to pull a liquor license for any violation of the rules.

    Aw heck, I almost forgot.. Remember the bars that wanted to stay open despite the 'Covid rules'? Liquor license revocation was the leverage the state used to make them get in line. The state cannot pick & choose which rules they enforce. They made the threats back then, they have to do the same now.

    Lawyers vs multi-billion dollar corp vs the state. Yeah, this will be sporting to watch them all try to eat each other.

    1. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

      Re: Liquor license

      "The state cannot pick & choose which rules they enforce."

      Er, what? Arbitrary and capricious are just tools of the trade.

      1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

        Re: Liquor license

        And this is NYC. Just ask Louis Rossman.

  15. MachDiamond Silver badge

    On the downvoted side

    I'd not want attorneys from a law firm that is suing me to have access to any of my venues, should I have any. There's less chance of those lawyers striking up conversations and "friendships" with my employees in the hopes they'll spill some information that can be used in a case. Those lawyers might want to be inside to observe and record how things are done at the property including how quickly a wet floor or other slip hazard is dealt with and how. As everybody, particularly attorneys, have cameras with them all of the time, making still, audio and video recordings is very easy to do. In fact, there could be plenty of people within a few meters all doing just that just about anywhere the public is allowed.

    There is no separation between attorneys assigned to a case and other attorneys in a firm. If you've ever seen a billing statement from a law office, everybody down to the cleaning staff seem to have a line and hours listed. MSG has no idea who and to what extent any particular lawyer in the firm is privy to or taking a role of some sort in a case. All they may know is who has the lead and their assistant(s).

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