Facebook To Start Taking Down “Deepfake” Videos

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Manipulated media is one of the most dangerous forms that fake news can take. We’ve talked about deepfakes before and the horror of deepfakes comes from the fact that they can make it appear as if you or anyone else said or did something they didn’t do at all.

Unlike other forms of fake news which are easier to discern deepfakes are harder to discern and most people who will encounter them will have a hard time being able to actually tell that they are fake.

Facebook has announced that they will start acting on such videos to protect users from manipulation. The company will do so in collaboration with other organisations

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Collaboration is key. Across the world, we’ve been driving conversations with more than 50 global experts with technical, policy, media, legal, civic and academic backgrounds to inform our policy development and improve the science of detecting manipulated media. 


As a result of these partnerships and discussions, we are strengthening our policy toward misleading manipulated videos that have been identified as deepfakes.

According to Facebook’s blog post manipulated media will get removed if it fits the following criteria:

  • It has been edited or synthesized – beyond adjustments for clarity or quality – in ways that aren’t apparent to an average person and would likely mislead someone into thinking that a subject of the video said words that they did not actually say. And:
  • It is the product of artificial intelligence or machine learning that merges, replaces or superimposes content onto a video, making it appear to be authentic.

We are also engaged in the identification of manipulated content, of which deepfakes are the most challenging to detect. That’s why last September we launched the Deep Fake Detection Challenge, which has spurred people from all over the world to produce more research and open source tools to detect deepfakes. This project, supported by $10 million in grants, includes a cross-sector coalition of organizations including the Partnership on AI, Cornell Tech, the University of California Berkeley, MIT, WITNESS, Microsoft, the BBC and AWS, among several others in civil society and the technology, media and academic communities.


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Published by
Farai Mudzingwa

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