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(48,863 posts)
Sun Jun 25, 2023, 10:18 AM Jun 2023

Former Biden official Nina Jankowicz: I Shouldn't Have to Accept Being in Deepfake Porn (Atlantic) [View all]

Archive page at https://archive.ph/OjlIW

Recently, a Google Alert informed me that I am the subject of deepfake pornography. I wasn’t shocked. For more than a year, I have been the target of a widespread online harassment campaign, and deepfake porn—whose creators, using artificial intelligence, generate explicit video clips that seem to show real people in sexual situations that never actually occurred—has become a prized weapon in the arsenal misogynists use to try to drive women out of public life. The only emotion I felt as I informed my lawyers about the latest violation of my privacy was a profound disappointment in the technology—and in the lawmakers and regulators who have offered no justice to people who appear in porn clips without their consent. Many commentators have been tying themselves in knots over the potential threats posed by artificial intelligence—deepfake videos that tip elections or start wars, job-destroying deployments of ChatGPT and other generative technologies. Yet policy makers have all but ignored an urgent AI problem that is already affecting many lives, including mine.

Last year, I resigned as head of the Department of Homeland Security’s Disinformation Governance Board, a policy-coordination body that the Biden administration let founder amid criticism mostly from the right. In subsequent months, at least three artificially generated videos that appear to show me engaging in sex acts were uploaded to websites specializing in deepfake porn. The images don’t look much like me; the generative-AI models that spat them out seem to have been trained on my official U.S. government portrait, taken when I was six months pregnant. Whoever created the videos likely used a free “face swap” tool, essentially pasting my photo onto an existing porn video. In some moments, the original performer’s mouth is visible while the deepfake Frankenstein moves and my face flickers. But these videos aren’t meant to be convincing—all of the websites and the individual videos they host are clearly labeled as fakes. Although they may provide cheap thrills for the viewer, their deeper purpose is to humiliate, shame, and objectify women, especially women who have the temerity to speak out. I am somewhat inured to this abuse, after researching and writing about it for years. But for other women, especially those in more conservative or patriarchal environments, appearing in a deepfake-porn video could be profoundly stigmatizing, even career- or life-threatening.

As if to underscore video makers’ compulsion to punish women who speak out, one of the videos to which Google alerted me depicts me with Hillary Clinton and Greta Thunberg. Because of their global celebrity, deepfakes of the former presidential candidate and the climate-change activist are far more numerous and more graphic than those of me. Users can also easily find deepfake-porn videos of the singer Taylor Swift, the actress Emma Watson, and the former Fox News host Megyn Kelly; Democratic officials such as Kamala Harris, Nancy Pelosi, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; the Republicans Nikki Haley and Elise Stefanik; and countless other prominent women. By simply existing as women in public life, we have all become targets, stripped of our accomplishments, our intellect, and our activism and reduced to sex objects for the pleasure of millions of anonymous eyes.

Men, of course, are subject to this abuse far less frequently. In reporting this article, I searched the name Donald Trump on one prominent deepfake-porn website and turned up one video of the former president—and three entire pages of videos depicting his wife, Melania, and daughter Ivanka. A 2019 study from Sensity, a company that monitors synthetic media, estimated that more than 96 percent of deepfakes then in existence were nonconsensual pornography of women. The reasons for this disproportion are interconnected, and are both technical and motivational: The people making these videos are presumably heterosexual men who value their own gratification more than they value women’s personhood. And because AI systems are trained on an internet that abounds with images of women’s bodies, much of the nonconsensual porn that those systems generate is more believable than, say, computer-generated clips of cute animals playing would be.


More at the link.

She concludes by saying that with AI "more powerful by the month, adapting the law to an emergent category of misogynistic abuse is all the more essential to protect women’s privacy and safety. As policy makers worry whether AI will destroy the world, I beg them: Let’s first stop the men who are using it to discredit and humiliate women."
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Thanks for sharing this GPV Jun 2023 #1
Haley Stevens from Michigan (my rep) was on this back in 2019..... Takket Jun 2023 #2
Good for her, and thanks for the link! highplainsdem Jun 2023 #19
It should be illegal to use someone's likeness in something which they weren't a participant SouthernDem4ever Jun 2023 #3
Issue is how to you track down social media IbogaProject Jun 2023 #6
They typically invoke the broad protections of parody Orrex Jun 2023 #11
It's defamation IbogaProject Jun 2023 #15
To be clear, I'm not defending them. Orrex Jun 2023 #17
I suppose it might matter if the material is clearly represented as parody... Silent3 Jun 2023 #21
Wow 😯 There need to be laws against this and quickly. n/t iluvtennis Jun 2023 #4
This is why men make such lousy moral arbiters Warpy Jun 2023 #5
There are "revenge porn" laws but the problem is finding the maker oldsoftie Jun 2023 #7
And AI has made creating deepfakes so much easier. highplainsdem Jun 2023 #20
A 15 year old local boy took his own life MontanaMama Jun 2023 #8
God, how tragic! highplainsdem Jun 2023 #16
There's also a case in which a Pennsylvania woman created fake images of her daughter's school rival Orrex Jun 2023 #18
Kick and so recommend. As the great historian Mary Beard bronxiteforever Jun 2023 #9
Truth. JudyM Jun 2023 #22
Felony NowISeetheLight Jun 2023 #10
That toothpaste is out of the tube. There's no way to put it back. Scrivener7 Jun 2023 #12
Find the weasel that did it charge him with assault JanMichael Jun 2023 #13
their deeper purpose... 2naSalit Jun 2023 #14
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