Pay Per Laugh: Comedy Club Uses Facial Recognition Software To Charge By Laughs

Pay Per Laugh is a new facial recognition software utilized by the Barcelona comedy club TeatreNeu.

The software is said to do exactly what the name indicates — make patrons pay for only the laughs that they have while visiting the club.

So far the software is exclusive to the club, and it runs on a tablet attached to the back of each seat, according to a report from Geek.

So what exactly is the going rate for each laugh? Around 38 cents in U.S. money with tickets maxing out at a price of around $30. Sound crazy? It’s not.

Since enacting the new system, TeatreNeu claims that it has seen an increase in revenue with an average ticket price that is up by $7.50.

The Geek writeup says that Pay Per Laugh could soon be coming to other clubs throughout Spain in spite of the fear that some patrons will try to hold back the laughs in order to pay less.

It’s definitely an interesting idea, and it could be one that forces comedians to up their game. If you’ve got an audience that is actively fighting the desire to laugh, some of the sets could become pretty difficult to manage.

No word on how the affected acts feel about it just yet, but here’s a promo video TeatreNeu made to introduce the technology.

Pay Per Laugh definitely isn’t the first facial recognition software to make a splash. According to an earlier report from The Verge, Facebook has utilized it to great effect.

In downplaying the FBI’s primitive facial recognition system, the website gives praise to DeepFace.

“Compare that to Facebook’s DeepFace system, presented at the IEEE Computer Vision conference earlier this month, and it looks even worse,” wrote Russell Brandom. “Give Facebook two pictures, and it can tell you with 97 percent accuracy whether they’re the same person, roughly the same accuracy as a human being in the same spot.”

Facebook has extensive data to pull this off, Brandom adds, “so it ends up comparing each face to a smaller number of possibilities.”

What do you think about facial recognition, readers? Does it make the world a bit too creepy, or is it a valuable tool in the fight against cyber threats?

And as for the comedy clubs, would you intentionally hold back the laughter if you found out you had to pay for each time you cracked up? Is Pay Per Laugh awesome or no?

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