Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. (MSG Entertainment) is using facial recognition technology to eject lawyers suing them from shows. According to a report by Rolling Stone, MSG Entertainment, who owns Madison Square Garden as well as Radio City Music Hall and the Beacon Theatre, ejected lawyer Barbara Hart and her husband from a Brandi Carlile show on October 22. Hart is an attorney at Grant & Eisenhofer, who is currently suing MSG Entertainment as part of a class action lawsuit.
“There’s a wealth of possibility to use technology to the betterment of our society,” said Hart to Rolling Stone. “But my real feeling here is that this case is demonstrative of the abuse of technology, akin to what we see with Elon Musk kicking people off of Twitter just because they can.”
A similar situation happened to Kelly Conlon, an associate at a firm suing MSG Entertainment, as she was thrown out of a Radio City Rockettes show at Radio City Music Hall she was attending with her daughter and Girl Scout Troop.
But surely this can’t just be the new dystopian hell we live in, right? They’re not actually using facial recognition technology to toss anyone opposing them from shows, right? Unfortunately MSG Entertainment provided a statement to Rolling Stone confirming that is exactly the case.
“MSG instituted a straightforward policy that precludes attorneys from firms pursuing active litigation against the Company from attending events at our venues until that litigation has been resolved. While we understand this policy is disappointing to some, we cannot ignore the fact that litigation creates an inherently adversarial environment.”
The only word that comes to mind here is definitely “dystopian.” That someone who was hired to do a job gets tossed from a show they paid to go to because the company they’re suing has decided they shouldn’t be there, and used facial recognition technology to identify them. Woof.
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