Actual Agency

The right portrait is a visualization of the actual agency (AA) that a user likely has over their facial data. Compared to that user’s desired agency (DA), the calculation for arriving at this number is very complex (see image below), and involves many factors within and outside that user’s immediate control. As we explain below, a person’s gender, class and race play an out-sized role in AA, as do their political leanings, citizenship, travel habits and social media participation.

The formula used to calculate the actual agency (AA) that a user likely has over their facial data.

The variables in the above formula correspond to a series of questions that the user answers, which we have included below, with explanations and resources explaining why we have asked the questions we have and how they correspond to the above formula.

Global Passport Power Rank (a)

VISA Score (b)


Border Crossing Score and Explanation

  • Number of lifetime border crossings (c1)
  • Number of border crossings in the last year (c2)

Interrogation Score and Explanation

  • Number of times you have been asked more than 4 questions at a border crossing (d1)
  • Number of times you have been taken to an airport interrogation room (d2)
  • number of times you have been stopped by law enforcement (including police) (d3)
  • Number of times you have been processed (for detainment or arrest) (d4)
  • ***TO ADD**** How many times have you attended a protest?

Biometric Score and Explanation

  • Number of times you have been fingerprinted (by any government) (e1)
  • Have you ever taken a voluntary DNA test (like 23andme)? (e2)
  • Have you ever involuntarily given a DNA sample? (e3)
  • How many times have you been body scanned in an airport in the last year? (e4)
  • Have you ever given any biometric data for a job application? (e5)

Social Media Score and Explanation

  • Do you have Facebook? (f1a)
  • If you have Facebook, how long have you had it? (f1b)
  • Is your Facebook public? (f1c)
  • Have you ever posted a photo of yourself that includes your face? / Have you ever been tagged in photo that included your face? (f1d)
  • Do you have LinkedIn? (f2a)
  • If you have LinkdIn, how long have you had it? (f2b)
  • Do you have a photo attached to your profile? (f2c)
  • Is your LinkdIn Profile public? (f2d)
  • ***TO ADD*** Flickr Questions
  • Do you have an Instagram account? (f3a)
  • If you have Instagram account, how long have you had it? (f3b)
  • Is your Instagram account public? (f3c)
  • Have you ever posted a photo of yourself that includes your face? / Have you ever been tagged in photo that included your face? (f3d)

Demographics Score and explanation

  • How do you identify your gender? (g1)
  • How do you identity your race? (g2)
  • How old are you? (g3)
  • What is your average yearly income? (g4)
  • ***TO ADD*** identify with any religion?