New York State Bar Association Is Studying the Impact of Facial Recognition Software on Individual Freedom
The New York State Bar Association is examining the legal and ethical implications and the impact on personal freedom of corporations employing facial recognition software to ban their adversaries – and every lawyer who works for a firm that represents them — from entering sports and entertainment venues.
The association’s Executive Committee on Wednesday launched the Working Group on Facial Recognition Technology and Access to Legal Representation. The group will study the impact the technology is having on a lawyer’s ability to represent clients without fear of retribution.
MSG Entertainment, the owner of Madison Square Garden and Radio City Music Hall in New York City, has deployed facial recognition software to ban from its venues lawyers who work for firms that sue the company.
“The use of facial recognition software to exclude members of law firms from a Knicks basketball game or a Taylor Swift concert discriminates against lawyers for doing their jobs,” said Sherry Levin Wallach, president of the New York State Bar Association. “A law firm should be able to represent clients in a personal injury lawsuit, a dispute about concert tickets or any other legal matter without fear of retribution. We must regulate facial recognition software before it has an irreversible impact on the personal lives of all of us.”
Domenick Napoletano, a solo practitioner in Brooklyn who will become the association’s president-elect on June 1, is chairing the working group. The group will report back to the Executive Committee, which will consider taking further action.
Levin Wallach appointed the following members of the Executive Committee to the working group:
- Orin J. Cohen, a solo practitioner at OrinCohen in Staten Island
- Sarah Gold, a solo practitioner at the Gold Law Firm in Albany
- Ronald Hedges, the principal of Ronald Hedges in Hackensack, N.J.
- LaMarr J. Jackson, a solo practitioner in Rochester
- Thomas J. Maroney, a partner at Maroney O’Connor in New York City
- Michael R. May, a partner at Levene Gouldin & Thompson in Ithaca