Do you believe everything you find on the internet?
As our technology advances at a rapid pace, people are slowly beginning to realize that everything they see on the internet and in the movies they watch is not real. Marvel movies may depict outer space wars that you knew came with CGI, but what if you are seeing an actor on screen that was never actually in the film? This process is called deepfaking.
Deepfaking is a term that is created by combining “deep learning” and “fake” and was created to describe a type of artificial intelligence that takes an existing image and superimposes it onto a separate image. In fact, this is done so well that in this day and age it can almost be impossible to determine a real video from one that has been deepfaked. This is a growing concern as the internet evolves as more and more incorrect information is presented to us as we take in what we see on the internet every day.
That being said, there are good and bad things that have been created through the process of deepfaking. A video that recently appeared online has used deepfake technology to show real people dancing professionally in styles they have never danced before. Giving people these opportunities helps them see a side of dance they may have never experienced before, and give them a new perspective by watching themselves do professional ballet on a screen. This is a fun use of the technology, but can the good outweigh the bad? To decide we need to fully understand the options this technology is capable of.
Examples of Deepfaking in Our Everyday Life:
- The website Reddit has banned deepfaking of any kind since 2017 after an anonymous user began to use the technology to superimpose celebrity images onto pornography. This caused mass scandal among multiple celebrities. Other websites such as Twitter and even Pornhub have banned deepfaking following this episode.
- Fake news is more accessible than ever and this video of someone imitating Obama’s image and voice shows just how easy it could be to spread fake news with deepfaking.
- Films can use a similar deepfaking technology to put formerly deceased actors in upcoming movies. Do you want Nicholas Cage or Marilyn Monroe in your next blockbuster? No problem. At an extreme level, this could effectively mask the talent of lesser known actors, now only being used as stand-ins, and affect the reputation of actors that can no longer speak for themselves. How far are movies willing to go to disrupt reality?
Max Volska, a student studying film for over two years has explained his views on deepfaking and its impact on the film world.