In America being gay, enjoying the occasional alcoholic beverage and practicing, say, Hinduism, are rights we all take for granted.
In many other countries, however, they could result in imprisonment, torture, or even death.
So Amnesty International’s New Zealand office worked with ad agency Colenso BBDO of Auckland to launch an app, Trial by Timeline, that parses Facebook information to determine the punishment the user would receive in various countries across the globe. (It has only recently been gaining international attention.)
Before activating the app by pressing the “Sentence me” button, the site ominously warns that “everything you’ve said or done [will] be used against you.”
Then, using online scanning software, it analyses all the data contained in your Facebook timeline. For example, your age, relationship status, nationality, political views, group affiliations, and “likes” are all considered before sentencing is handed out at your virtual trial.
Adweek reporter David Griner claimed that after his his Facebook timeline was analysed he “was beaten and tortured more than 270 times, but [fortunately] wasn’t beheaded or stoned to death.” Griner found the app “morbidly fascinating”.
Why New Zealand of all places, you ask?
Because as the Amnesty site reveals, “this year New Zealand was named one of the freest countries on earth”.
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