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Shiseido and Microsoft trial make-up filter for women on video conferences

Signal of change / Shiseido and Microsoft trial make-up filter for women on video conferences

By Jiehui Kia / 04 Dec 2017

The Japanese cosmetic giant Shiseido has partnered with Microsoft Japan and Skype For Business to create 'Telebeauty': an augmented reality app that applies virtual make-up to a teleconference user's video image. 

"Women use the app by selecting one of four palettes: natural, trend, cool, or pretty, before entering the teleconference call. The app then scans the user’s face and adjusts her skin tone, superimposing a kind of digital beauty balm that blurs pores, dark spots, and pimples. It also adds blush, lipstick, and eye makeup."

So what?

Video conferences are already becoming a big part of the future 'workplace', with available technology allowing companies to accomodate flexible working arrangements and mobile or remote employees. The next wave of innovation will go beyond technical excellence, to navigating the evolving socio-cultural norms that accompany new forms of virtual workplace interactions.

How societies reshape workplace expectations around virtual work may well present opportunities to either subvert or reinforce existing workplace biases and discrimination.

This signal was originally written on 24 Oct 2016.


What might the implications of this be? What related signals of change have you seen?

this instantly made me think of the novel 'Infinite Jest', perhaps not a good omen! It contains a satirical future history of 'videophony' (the book was written in the 90s, before skype etc) that describes a slowly-building societal wave of image insecurity and vanity that culminates with everyone using 'prettified simulacra' of themselves on video calls, before finally giving up and going back to aural-only calls...
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