The country of China has been working to control its citizens lives down to the number of video games or movies they purchase. They have succeeded in many parts of China in implementing a "Social Credit" system based on a person's behaviors as they are monitored by surveillance cameras throughout entire cities and algorithms identify and give that person a score.
If someone cuts off another car in traffic they may lose social credit points, if someone donates blood or does something else positive for their community they can gain points. The capital of China, Beijing has announced it will adopt a lifelong points program by 2021 that assigns ratings and controls the lives of every single resident.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">"Social credit": Beijing is set to judge every resident based on their behavior by the end of 2020 <a href="https://t.co/oEDu8Y8hYE">pic.twitter.com/oEDu8Y8hYE</a></p>— TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) <a href="https://twitter.com/tictoc/status/1065969863624138753?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 23, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Beijing will do this by pooling data from several smaller departments who are already monitoring citizens' actions. The system is set to punish some 22 million citizens based on their actions by the end of 2020 and punishments include being unable to buy a home or leave the country.
<a href="http://zhengce.beijing.gov.cn/library/192/33/50/438650/1571810/index.html">A plan posted on the Beijing municipal government’s website</a> describes the system in greater detail saying that those who have better social credit will get "green channel" benefits while those who violate laws will be subject to harsher penalties. The plan includes improving "blacklist" systems that propose making those deemed untrustworthy "unable to move even a single step".
The amount of control that the Chinese government is attempting to exercise upon its citizens is making for some conflicting extremes when it comes to those who make a living in the entertainment industry. One prominent Chinese singer simply disappeared after a falling out with the government who wished to rate her poorly because of how frequently she traveled and engaged in outings at restaurants and shows.
Critics of the plan say it could reduce humans to little more than a report card in a computer.
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Over a dozen Chinese cities are already moving forward with similar programs but Beijing's plan is the largest and most ambitious social credit system yet. The police in China already utilize cutting-edge facial recognition technology and algorithms can determine a person's identity from a far away angle in a just a few milliseconds. The system has already barred millions of Chinese nationals from booking flights or trains.
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