Facebook this week made the process of tagging multiple photos a bit easier by adding facial recognition technology.
Going forward, Facebook will examine newly uploaded photos and compare them to other photos in which you or your friends are tagged in order to make tagging suggestions.
“When you or a friend upload new photos, we use face recognition software—similar to that found in many photo editing tools—to match your new photos to other photos you’re tagged in,” Facebook said in a blog post. “We group similar photos together and, whenever possible, suggest the name of the friend in the photos.”
If the prospect of having yourself tagged in dozens of photos across Facebook makes you cringe, Facebook said you can opt out of facial recognition. Under “Customize Settings,” uncheck “Suggest photos of me to friends.” Your name will no longer be suggested in photo tags, though friends can still tag you manually (and you can promptly untag).
“Now if you upload pictures from your cousin’s wedding, we’ll group together pictures of the bride and suggest her name. Instead of typing her name 64 times, all you’ll need to do is click ‘Save’ to tag all of your cousin’s pictures at once,” Facebook said. “By making tagging easier than before, you’re more likely to know right away when friends post photos. We notify you when you’re tagged, and you can untag yourself at any time. As always, only friends can tag each other in photos.”
The feature will debut in the U.S. in the next few weeks; look for tag suggestions when you upload photos.
Facebook started a limited test of facial recognition technology in July. In October, the social-networking site revamped its photo options, significantly improving the size of photos that can be stored on the site, and updating the tagging and viewing processes.