In a bizarre incident at a soccer game in Scotland, an artificial intelligence (AI) camera continuously tracked a bald referee mistaking it for the ball. A video of the hilarious gaffe in now going viral, leaving netizens amused online.
The unprecedented event, which occurred during a match between Inverness Caledonian Thistle and Ayr United hosted in Inverness in the distant Scottish Highlands at the Caledonian Stadium, has got everyone talking online on how technology once again intercepted the match in the wrong way. The commentator had to repeatedly apologise as the camera kept on mistaking the ball for the linesman’s head.
Owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Inverness club had announced its decision to refrain using human camera operators and instead rely on an automated camera system to follow the action. However, the AI camera couldn’t differentiate between the ball and the bald head of the linesman, with the referee’s head glistening in the glorious Scottish sun in the late afternoon.
As center-forward Nikola Todorov scored the team’s first goal, Thick Accent reported, “The camera kept on mistaking the ball for the bald head on the sidelines, denying viewers of the real action while focusing on the linesman instead”.
The club had proudly announced earlier that the new “Pixellot system uses cameras with in-built, AI, ball-tracking technology” and would be used to capture HD footage of all home matches at Caledonian Stadium, which would be broadcast directly to season-ticket holders’ homes. Alas, things didn’t go as plan.
Netizens on social media had a blast poking fun at the hilarious turn of events.
I love it so much, the camera is like “ball ball ball bald head, there’s a bald head, zoom in on the bald head”
— James Felton (@JimMFelton) October 29, 2020
The evolution of a technology and its failures :/ kkkkkk https://t.co/eLSgI5YHyG
— Hudson Lodi (@hudson_lodi) October 30, 2020
This delights me far more than it should. https://t.co/kwXgRuEB2g
— Shane Henry (@Hirald0) October 31, 2020
The horrifying nature of our AI/robotic future will have many banal moments like this. https://t.co/KIcOcCObg9
— Zach D Roberts (@zdroberts) October 29, 2020
Just a tiny flex for 2020, really. https://t.co/JG4NWEsQ3i
— Kerry Campbell (@kerrywcampbell) October 30, 2020
There is an amazing point to be made here about what the developer intends, and the what the outcome is 😂😂 I love this so much 😂😂 https://t.co/bpvTl5Zc94
— Alex Wilson-Arno (@AlexWilsonArno) October 30, 2020
I, for one, welcome our new AI cameraman overlords https://t.co/55BhlZUI0B
— Alessandro Nai (@alessandro_nai) October 30, 2020
I’m sorry, this is the funniest thing I’ve seen all day. I’m dying. https://t.co/okDokBmbCq
— L&D Tech (@IDKath77) October 31, 2020
Although the match ended a 1-1 draw, more than the team’s effort, it was the gaffe that stole all the attention online. As many started to tag the camera company to complain and demand answers, a spokesperson in a tweet said: “We are aware of the issue with linesman and we are already working on improving this for the next game. We hope that this will not happen again and that your viewing experience will be better. Thank you.”