Anytime there is a viral anything on the Internet, we here at Common Sense Conspiracy can expect a few emails or messages about whether there is some sort of conspiracy involved. After all, people in conspiracy circles can be a tad bit paranoid at times, and when they see almost everyone biting on something hard, they start to wonder just what it all means in the big picture.
There have been dozens of these over the years. Remember the cinnamon challenge? The ice bucket challenge? That weird dress where everyone just had to let you know what color they see it as. Yes, the list goes on and on. For 2019, we are starting out with something called “The How Hard Did Aging Hit You Challenge.”
It’s catching fire on social media as we speak, and no doubt within hours, you are going to see tons of friends, co-workers and relatives taking to Facebook or their social media drug of choice to post before-and-after style pictures of them several years ago versus now. Like most of these challenges, you can look high and low, but you will never figure out just where this started. Viral things on the Internet are almost always like that. It just takes off and no one really knows whose brainchild they are partaking in. So, many of our loyal readers suggest that maybe it all starts with your favorite uncle — Uncle Sam. That’s right, a lot of people think the How Hard Did Aging Hit You Challenge may have been sanctioned by the government.
But why? What possibly could be the reason for the government to want to start a movement like this? That’s an easy one. See, facial recognition is all the rage in the cyber-security world these days. Turn on any of your favorite CSI-style shows and you’ll see FBI or other agencies using cameras everywhere to scan faces and see who is going where in seconds.
The real world is not as easy. Yes, they have the technology. We know that just by looking around. Facebook has long identified faces and put them with names, albeit with help from their amazing base of users. No doubt the NSA, FBI, and CIA are using facial recognition more and more as the years go by. However, did you ever think about how these databases get populated?
Driver license photographs and mugshots when someone finds themselves on the wrong side of the law are a big chunk of it, no doubt. These standard kind of photographs don’t work that well for facial recognition though. How many times out in the subway are you posing exactly like your driver license picture, or worse yet, your mugshot from a night that turned wrong? We’re guessing not that many. And these don’t get updated for years at a time if they get updated at all.
So, how do you keep a vast database for facial recognition updated all the time? You scour places where people like to put pictures of themselves. Over and over again. Over periods of years. You scour Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, the web for blog pages, high school yearbooks, you name it. The selfie movement helped the government out big time, but how could you make it catch fire again and get everyone to willingly provide you with some pictures showing how they have aged over the years? They even enjoy it. They laugh about it and pass it around to their friends and family.
Is the How Hard Did Aging Hit You Challenge a massive conspiracy? We can’t know for sure. Think about this though. Even if the government had absolutely nothing to do with this viral challenge and it was all the brainchild of someone completely innocent who just thought it was interesting to get people to post pictures of themselves in the past and now, can you imagine for one second that someone in the government hasn’t at the very least thought this a fortuitous turn of events?
It may not be a conspiracy and it may be. The outcome is the same. There is a 100% chance that the government is watching this challenge and using it to increase the accuracy of its facial recognition software. Will you be a willing participant or will you resist the viral movement?