About Boogaloo Bias


Boogaloo Bias in an interactive artwork and research project that highlights some of the known problems with law enforcement agencies’ use of facial recognition technologies, including the practice of ‘brute forcing’ where, in the absence of high-quality images of a suspect, agents have been known to substitute images of celebrities the suspect is reported to resemble. The Boogaloo Bias facial recognition algorithm is trained on faces of characters from the 1984 movie Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo. The film is the namesake for the Boogaloo Bois, an anti-law enforcement militia that emerged from 4chan meme culture and has been present at protests since January 2020. The system uses movie character faces to brute force the generation of leads to find members of the Boogaloo Bois in live video feeds and videos of protest footage. All matches made by the system are false positives. Many of the documents used in the research portion of the project are available in the resources section of this website.

Privacy Statement


If you’ve encountered a Boogaloo Bias surveillance camera in the world or as part of an art exhibition, rest assured that your data is not being collected. We have designed our system to be a closed loop: the system does not send or receive data outside of the closed loop of the camera and the monitor. Our project is meant to show how facial recognition systems work, including some of the ways these systems are currently used by law enforcement, as well as the ways these systems break down and find false positives. It is very important to us to protect every participant’s privacy as they interact with our artwork.