No, this isn’t creepy at all.
For as long as the Internet has existed, it’s been used to facilitate fapping. And as we inevitably grow accustomed to having literally millions of free clips at our fingertips, porn consumers are looking for more novel ways to, er, enjoy the medium. Enter: adult hookup apps, Google Glass porn, an iPad case you can have sex with—and now, facial recognition technology that lets you really personalize the porn-watching experience.
According to Forbes, a group of three “entreporneurs,” all under the age of 24, have developed a program that uses facial recognition technology to identify a porn-watcher’s ultimate fantasy girl. Upload a photo of your preferred female, and the software can find a porn actress doppelganger based on hair color, body type, key facial features, and even ethnicity. Naturally, the trio cites an aspiration to become the Steve Jobs of beating off, though the group has since distanced itself from that claim. (Editor’s note: The Forbes article has since been pulled.)
“There’s a trend in the U.S. for people to look for porn featuring people they, like, know,” said Justin Zablocki, one of the three young minds behind Great Fap. “We wanted to assist in that. You can already scour the Internet to find people who look like the person you have in mind, but we are cutting out a big step.”
Brothers Trevor and Justin Zablocki developed the site, which reportedly boasts as many as 10,000 daily visitors and growing ad revenue, as well as a “successful, straight-laced side business.” Harry Manno initially served as a “limited partner” and advisor in the venture.
Forbes contributor Jasper Hamill calls the new technology “disruptive” and, perhaps more accurately, “controversial.” The site uses a facial recognition software called ReKognition, from the firm that also built a facial recognition API for Google Glass. “Scan a picture of two people in and it will even show you footage featuring pornographic lookalikes for both women, perhaps at the same time,” Hamill adds.
Great Fap is essentially taking the concept of the girl next door, which porn producers love to recycle, and literally adding in a photo of the girl who lives next door. But while it doesn’t seem all that different than beating it to an actual photograph, there’s something a little icky about the implications of using facial recognition to streamline the porn watching experience—not to mention the fact that unknowing women will have their totally SFW photographs uploaded to a seedy porn site with dubious security protections.
Update 11:38am, Oct. 16: Harry Manno, who is no longer affiliated with the project, clarified to the Daily Dot that each image uploaded to the site is encrypted. He also noted, that contrary to the Daily Dot’s initial report, the site is not yet profitable and that Great Fap is interested in cataloging male porn star stars as well. “This is because porn is a more than 10 billion dollar industry with the primary consumer unarguably being a straight male. Any one who has ever taken any business class would see the need to target this market first and expand later as demand seems fit,” Manno said. “Had the site been continued and updated they may have added this portion.”
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly attributed a quote about the inspiration behind the app, due to an apparent error in the original Forbes report. This story has been updated with clarification provided by Manno.