How Police Are Using ‘Super Recognizers’ Like Me to Track Criminals [Vice]

“Super recognizers,’ who have uncanny abilities to remember faces of people they’ve seen before, are solving crimes for police.

I always knew I was good at recognizing faces. I’d be in the street and I’d see a face and know that it was my friend’s sister from when we were six. The last time I saw them could’ve been over 30 years ago. I’d go up to them and say “Oh my god, Amber, I can’t believe it, how’re you doing?” and she’d look at me blankly. It happened so often that I just thought I took more notice of people and I was completely forgettable. But it turns out that from a tiny millisecond—I don’t even need to get a good look at someone, I can just glance over my shoulder and back again—I’ll know who they are from decades ago.

I am the opposite of a super-recognizer. I have a great deal of difficulty recognizing faces.

Mitch Wagner @MitchWagner