During a debate, people in the room should be paying attention to what’s going on, especially during a political debate which could have the potential to affect the entire country. However, politicians are people too, and just like how we are distracted by our phones during work and during class, so are politicians.
But how long do they spend on their phones? Is it a short period of time to tend to matters, or are they distracted because they aren’t interested in what’s going on? That’s what an AI called Dries Depoorter is trying to find out where during televised streams of political debates, the AI can scan the video and not only determine how long a person is staring at their phone, but who they are as well.
Every meeting of the flemish government in Belgium is live streamed on a YouTube channel.
Software is searching for phones and tries to identify a distracted politician. This with the help of AI. The results are then posted to social with the politician tagged. By @driesdepoorter pic.twitter.com/QUQHiYx2HI
— The Flemish Scrollers (@FlemishScroller) July 5, 2021
The images and videos are then uploaded onto social media where they are being “shamed” for being distracted. However, to be fair, the AI doesn’t know why the politicians are on their phone. Like we said, maybe they’re multitasking other tasks while being present at the debate, so we’re not sure if it’s 100% fair to call them out.
However, according to the AI’s creator, the idea behind this project isn’t to shame politicians, but rather to bring attention to how AI can be potentially misused for this level of intrusive surveillance.