I’ve seen this circulated as news (thanks, social media) but I’m pretty certain this is an artist having a laugh. A website called Face ID Masks claims that they make “N95 respiratory masks that work with facial recognition software. Our masks are custom printed with your face making phone access easy during viral epidemics.”
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I know most social media users don’t bother going too far past the headline, but it doesn’t take much scrolling on Face ID Masks’ website before you reach this telltale part of their FAQ:
Is this a joke?
Yes. No. We’re not sure. Viruses are not a joke. Wash your hands when you can. And get vaccines when you can.
How can I get one?
If you enjoy late stage capitalism, facial recognition respirator masks will retail for $40 per mask. They are still in development.
We will not be making these while there’s still a global mask shortage.
Sadly, I could just as easily see this not being a joke.