Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Inside the Reluctant Fight to Ban Deepfake Ads

This is all great, but voters are probably going to encounter more digital fakes online than over broadcast. And for digital ads, the government hasn’t issued any solutions.

The Federal Election Commission was petitioned by the advocacy group Public Citizen to create rules requiring FCC-like disclosures for all political ads, regardless of the medium, but the agency has yet to act. A January Washington Post report said that the FEC plans to make some decision by early summer. But summer is around the corner, and we haven’t heard much. The Senate Rules Committee passed three bills to regulate the use of AI in elections, including disclosures, earlier this month, but there’s no promise it will hit the floor in time to make a difference.

If you really want to get scared, there are only 166 days until the presidential election. That’s not many days to get something related to AI disclosures over the finish line, especially before the Biden and Trump campaigns, and all the downballot politicians, start dumping even more cash into ads on social platforms.

Without regulations, tech companies will carry much of the responsibility for protecting our elections from disinformation. If it doesn’t sound that different from 2020, I feel the same way! It’s a new issue, but with the same companies leading the charge. In November, Meta said that political ads must include disclaimers when they contain AI-generated content. TikTok doesn’t allow political ads, but it does require creators to label AI content when they share synthetic content depicting realistic images, audio, and video.

It’s something, but what happens if they make a huge mistake? Sure, Mark Zuckerberg and every other tech CEO may get hauled in by Congress for a hearing or two, but it’s unlikely they’d face regulatory consequences before the election takes place.

There’s a lot at stake here, and we’re running out of time. If Congress or an agency were to issue some guidance, they’d need to do it in the next few months. Otherwise, it might not be worth the effort.

The Chatroom

At the end of the podcast this week, we asked listeners to write in, describing how their experience following politics online has changed since the last presidential election. Are you navigating directly to news sites for election updates? Do you still have a decent relationship with X/Twitter? Maybe you subscribe to newsletters like this one? I want to know about it!

Leave a comment on the site, or send me an email at [email protected].

💬 Leave a comment below this article.


Want more? Subscribe now for unlimited access to WIRED.

What Else We’re Reading

🔗 See How Easily A.I. Chatbots Can Be Taught to Spew Disinformation: The New York Times created two chatbots, one liberal and one conservative. Each delivered partisan responses to political questions, sounding a bit too similar to how people speak to one another online. (The New York Times)

🔗 The Good News for Biden About Young Voters: While Biden is polling worse with young voters than in 2020, the numbers may not be as disastrous as they seem. (The Atlantic)

🔗 OpenAI Just Gave Away the Entire Game: Scarlett Johansson’s fiery statement responding to OpenAI’s most recent voice model shows how the company gobbles up data no matter what. (The Atlantic)

The Download

Let me gloat and gush about my desk for a sec, sorry. This week, the WIRED Politics Lab podcast reached the top 20 in Apple Podcast’s news ranking. We were also one of Amazon Music’s best podcasts of the week!

I’m back on the pod this week with Leah and David, talking about the actual final end of Twitter (X, ugh), the future of digital political communication, and what it all has to do with the New York–Dublin Portal. Check it out here!

And one last thing. Sometimes making good posts is recognizing when you’re out of the loop.

That’s it for today—thanks again for subscribing. You can get in touch with me via email, Instagram, X, and Signal at makenakelly.32.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *