Deepfakes became the talk of the town in 2023. So much so that, it was one of the top most searched words of 2023, as per Merriam-Webster online data. Plus, the rise of generative AI spiced things up, and made deepfakes scaringly good.
For those unaware, deepfakes are a type of synthetic media that use deep learning methods to replace one person’s appearance with that of another person. These fake images or videos are created using generative neural networks like autoencoders or GANs. The use of powerful machine learning and artificial intelligence technology makes it easier to generate or manipulate visual and audio content that can deceive people.
These deepfake contents, have the ability to mislead the general public and spread false information. The Indian government recently issued a strict warning that the creation and distribution of deepfakes carry a hefty penalty of ₹1 lakh in fine and a jail sentence of up to three years.
Let’s look at some of the deepfake controvercies that happened in 2023:
Deepfakes in India has become synonymous with Rashmika Mandanna. There was a deepfake video that went viral online, featuring her entering an elevator in a black yoga suit. However, later it was found that the original video featured social media influencer Zara Patel, altered to look like Rashmika Mandanna using digital manipulation. Rashmika Mandanna expressed her concerns about such videos and their impact on people’s privacy in a statement posted on her social media accounts.
Several celebrities, including Amitabh Bachchan, Mrunal Thakur, Naga Chaitanya, and Rajeev Chandrashekhar, the Minister of State for Electronics and Information technology of India, extended their support to her against this. After the video circulated on the internet, the Indian government reportedly reminded social media platforms of the legal provisions and associated penalties regarding deepfakes.
Sara Tendulkar, the daughter of legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, recently spoke out about becoming a victim of deepfake images. She shared on her Instagram story that there are several fake accounts on Twitter, now known as X, that have been impersonating her, raising concerns over the misuse of technology. In her post, she emphasized that while social media is a wonderful space for sharing daily activities, it is disconcerting to see the misuse of technology as it takes away from the authenticity of the internet. Sara urged people to base their communication on trust and reality, and not let entertainment come at the expense of the truth.
Sara is rumored to be dating Indian opener Shubman Gill, and the speculation was fueled by a Koffee with Karan season 8 episode where Sara Ali Khan was questioned about her rumored boyfriends. In response, Sara denied the rumors and hinted that Shubman Gill was actually in a relationship with Sachin’s daughter by stating that she was not the right Sara.
A deepfake video featuring Infosys founder N R Narayana Murthy is being circulated on Facebook. The video has been created by morphing a conversation from Business Today’s Mindrush event, where Narayana Murthy discussed his views on the Indian economy. However, the year-old original video has been manipulated in the fake video, he was discussing the benefits of a quantum computing software, which has apparently been developed by his team. The video claims that the technology can help stock market investors earn roughly INR 2.50 lakh on the first day of using it. However, this video has been flagged as false on Facebook.
The original video was filmed a year ago at the BT Mindrush event where Narayana Murthy shared his insights on Indian entrepreneurs. The deepfake video has attempted to evade the watermarks and other identifiers present in the original video by cropping the video closely around Murthy’s face.
The rise of deepfake videos has become a cause for concern among the public, particularly after the recent viral video involving Alia Bhatt. The video was flagged as a deepfake due to its discrepancies, which sparked a nationwide reaction. This technology enables users to create manipulated images and videos of individuals, making them appear to say or do things they never actually did in real life.
The detection and prevention of the spread of deepfakes are crucial to maintaining the accuracy and reliability of information and public trust in media. It is imperative to take necessary measures to address this issue and ensure that deepfake technology is not used to spread disinformation or cause harm to individuals. The emergence of such videos has raised concerns about the potential misuse of AI technology to create fake videos aimed at public figures.
Recent reports have shed light on an advertiser’s use of a deepfake video featuring renowned actor Tom Hanks to promote dental plans without his consent. In response to this AI-generated video, Hanks took to Instagram on Sunday to inform his followers and distance himself from the unauthorized use of his likeness.
Tom Hanks has been an outspoken advocate for highlighting the challenges posed by AI in the entertainment industry, with the use of actors’ digital representations being a major point of concern raised by SAG-AFTRA workers. This incident serves to underscore the potential risks and ethical considerations associated with the use of deepfake technology for commercial purposes.
A recent deepfake video featuring Priyanka Chopra Jonas, a popular actor, has gone viral on social media. Deepfakes are a type of synthetic media that use artificial intelligence to manipulate visual and audio content, often with a malicious intent, to appear authentic. In this particular deepfake Priyanka Chopra was seen promoting various brands and giving investment advice. However, the video has been digitally altered, and her voice has been edited to replace her original lines with fake promotions of a brand.
Deepfakes have been used to create false videos of politicians, celebrities, and other public figures. This has led to a massive controversy worldwide, and governments are currently strategizing internet regulations to address the issue.
The deepfake video of Priyanka Chopra Jonas has reignited concerns about the use of deepfakes and their potential harm. It highlights the need for regulations to prevent the misuse of this technology and protect individuals from the potential harm caused by deepfakes.
An altered or deepfake image of Katrina Kaif from her upcoming movie ‘Tiger 3’ has been circulating on the internet. In the original picture, the Bollywood star is seen fighting a Hollywood stunt woman while wearing a towel. However, in the manipulated photo, Katrina is wearing a white top and matching shorts.
Several users on X (formerly Twitter) have spoken out against this concerning trend of digitally altering celebrities’ images to create a sensation online. One fan expressed their frustration that AI technology is being misused by individuals to morph images and fabricate pictures, with women being the most common targets.
A new manipulated video of Kajol has surfaced online, adding to the latest string of deepfake controversies. The original clip features influencer Rosie Breen, who shared the clip on TikTok as part of the ‘Get Ready With Me’ trend. The deepfake video replaced Breen’s face with that of Kajol, showing the actress changing clothes on camera.
In the original clip even if Kajol’s face had been morphed into the video but for a split second, the manipulated video features the face of the original woman. The emergence of this video comes amidst growing concerns around deepfake, after a clip of another popular actor, Rashmika Mandanna, went viral. The original video was uploaded on TikTok on June 5 as part of the “Get Ready With Me” (GRWM) trend.