Facebook bans Deepfakes and photoshops

Facebook prohibits deepfakes and photoshopped from its platform. However, this will not apply at all levels, with only manipulated media designed to deceive being removed. Which means parody, satire, and media edited for legitimate reasons are safe.

For the uninitiated, deepfakes are videos that use artificial intelligence to put words in people’s mouths. Literally. They can be used to convince people that someone said something they hadn’t done. Which is obviously not good in the current political climate.

What Facebook is doing to fight Deepfakes

Facebook announced the move to tackle counterfeit and manipulated media in an article on the Facebook newsroom. In it, Monika Bickert, Vice President, Global Policy Management, explains what Facebook is banning and how it will enforce this crackdown.

Facebook is strengthening its policy towards manipulated media. And it will remove anything that has been “edited or synthesized” in a way that fools the average person. Especially if it’s “the product of artificial intelligence or machine learning”.

Facebook does not seek to edit media “for benign reasons, like making a video sharper or sound clearer.” Instead, he promises to crack down on media that are manipulated “to mislead”. Which covers both deepfakes and Photoshop work.

With people sharing millions of photos and videos on Facebook every day, the social network clearly needed to take action. And while no one might think tackling the deepfake problem will be easy, Facebook at least deserves credit for trying.

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Learn more about the technology behind Deepfakes

Facebook’s timing is, for once, perfect. For starters, deepfakes are more and more common and more difficult for ordinary people to detect. But we are also a few months away from the 2020 US presidential elections, which is sure to spark a recovery.

Deepfakes are a problem beyond Facebook. They appear everywhere on social networks and other sites. And now they are at the end of the battle against fake news.