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MLB Teams Reportedly Want to Use Camera Tech to Detect Maskless Fans in the Stands

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Ever since Major League Baseball started its shortened season in July, the sport has been besieged by coronavirus flareups that have threatened to make it an extremely shortened season. But baseball has plowed ahead, and it appears that teams might be getting a little more ambitious with their plans for games as they explore filling the surreal empty stadiums with real live fans under the watchful eye of a mask-detecting camera system.

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According to a Bloomberg report, numerous unidentified MLB teams have been in talks with Airspace Systems Inc. to deploy detection software in a camera system to recognize when fans aren’t wearing a mask in the stands. According to the report, the system could be designed to identify improperly worn masks as well.

Neither the MLB nor the Airspace Systems immediately responded to Gizmodo’s request for comment, but both organizations confirmed to Bloomberg that they are involved in discussions for such a system. And that’s about all they would say.

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Airspace Systems started as a drone security system company a few years ago and Crunchbase puts its funding at $25 million. Bloomberg says the company’s funding is actually closer to $35 million and that Airspace has taken on several airports and the MLB as customers in recent months. Airspace founder Jaz Banga told the outlet that the company doesn’t “even know how to do” facial recognition tech and dismissed any concerns about privacy. But data is a tempting beast for a profit-driven company, so take any promises with a grain of salt.

Thus far, Airspace has promoted its systems for stadiums as a way to detect, identify, and classify drones that enter the nearby airspace. But clients reportedly started asking for the system to be converted for enforcing pandemic protocols. According to Bloomberg, Airspace’s technology wouldn’t do much more than identify “hot zones” for mask misuse.

It’s understandable why both parties wouldn’t want to say much more. The entire concept hits political faultlines on both sides of the U.S.’s polarized response to the covid-19 pandemic. The idea of bringing fans into the games when teams can’t even control the spread of the virus among their highly paid and pampered players will surely offend people who would like to slow the spread of the pandemic. And the idea of forcing fans in the stadium to wear masks will surely offend a bunch of idiots.

The fact is, the MLB may simply be taking the long view. Literally no one knows when the U.S. will be able to safely return to a more normal way of life. One of the best barometers we can use is how super-rich, well-resourced companies like Google and Apple are forecasting the future. At the moment, Apple doesn’t expect its employees to return until early 2021 and Google has set a tentative early return date of July 2021. It’s entirely possible that the MLB is just thinking about what next season might look like.

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The idea of bringing fans back to the stadiums this year appears even more remote when you consider the fact that the forecast for the pandemic in the U.S. this fall is looking increasingly bleak. On Monday, Helen Branswell of STATnews published an excellent rundown of the hurdles the U.S. faces in the coming months as “indoor weather” and flu season arrive. The loss of safer outdoor spaces for people to gather and the potential of the healthcare system being overrun with patients is a tough pill to swallow. And unfortunately, we’ve taken full advantage of the benefits of summer leaving us in a situation that means the U.S. has utterly failed to contain the pandemic much less eradicate it as New Zealand did for just over 100 days. As of today, the Johns Hopkins covid tracker puts the U.S. at 5,098,452 cases, the highest case total in the world.

Look, the baseball players should probably just be skipping this season rather than traveling around spreading the plague. But the fan-less games have been pretty good so far, and I don’t really mind the oddball cutouts in the stands. Instead of setting up a political fight and inevitable physical fights among fans, just give us more of this giant baby:

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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