Beijing Restrooms Get Facial Recognition to Thwart Toilet Paper Bandits

By Justine Lopez, March 20, 2017

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In an effort to crack down on Beijing’s “toilet paper bandits,” numerous public restrooms at the Temple of Heaven are now equipped with facial recognition systems.  

A total of six facial recognition machines were installed in some of the park’s restrooms on Saturday, Straits Times reports. Anyone who needs toilet paper must now stand in line and get their faces scanned by the machines. If all goes well, the machine will dispense 60 cm of toilet paper. 

Although it sounds high-tech, the machines are already proving to be a nuisance. Because really, who wants to stand in line and wait when you just really have to go?

Already, the new system has caused longer lines and wait times at public restrooms at the popular tourist site. Many visitors stated that the new machines take upwards of a minute to scan faces and many actually failed to even dispense toilet paper. 

The new system was also downright baffling to many. Attendants were on site over the weekend to explain how the machines worked to confused visitors. However, this did little to alleviate concerns over privacy. Because nothing makes you more comfortable than knowing there’s a camera in the bathroom.

So why all the fuss over toilet paper? Well, many visitors to the Temple of Heaven are notorious for stashing massive amounts of toilet paper into their bags. 

The new system not only limits the amount of toilet paper each visitor can use, but if you are an all-too-frequent visitor to a particular restroom, the machines might just deny you toilet paper. 

[Images via Straits Times]

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