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There is no doubt that artificial intelligence has come a very long way in the last few years, but unfortunately, it has not yet been successful to differentiate between minute things.
Here is one such case of a man who was fined for using a mobile while what he actually did was scratching his face. This funny case happened in Jinan of the Eastern Shandong province in China. The man had apparently received a notice that he had broken the law by talking on the phone while driving.
Along with the letter, the man also received a surveillance picture of his so-called offence. The picture showed him holding his right hand to his cheek.
The man tried recollecting how he broke the rule as he never picked up his phone while driving.
On a closer look at the picture, the man realised that the picture didn't show any phone and it was just his hand in an awkward position near his face. It turns out that the man was just scratching his face when the picture was taken. Even after wrongly being charged, he received two penalty points on his licence and he was required to pay a $7.25 fine.
He shared his story on Sina Weibo after his plea of explanation fell on deaf ears of the authorities as they did not solve the problem for him.
His post read, "I often see people online exposed for driving and touching [others'] legs, but this morning, for touching my face, I was also snapped 'breaking the rules'!" To explain his situation, he even shared the surveillance photo as evidence.
The moment his story went viral on social media, it was picked up by mainstream news. As a result, the Jinan traffic authorities accepted the technical error and cancelled the ticket.
In their defence, they explained that "the traffic surveillance system automatically identifies a driver's body motion and then clicks a picture when it thinks the driver is breaking the rule". This was the reason why even though the man was scratching his face it triggered the artificial intelligence-powered device.
While the awkward position of his hand in the picture does make it look like he was holding an invisible phone in his hand, others expressed their concern about how closely China's ever-growing surveillance system is updated and is documenting the movements of the locals.