In an era where almost anything can be decried as “fake news,” has truth itself become an outdated philosophy?
New technology, available for free to absolutely anyone, is allowing innovative internet provocateurs to unleash realistic, albeit completely forged videos, to the content-quaffing masses.
Known as “Deepfakes,” malefactors employ face swapping, voice alterations, splicing, and editing tricks to cause mischief and mayhem. These aren’t Hollywood studio techniques reserved for major motion pictures like The Matrix anymore, and they’re inundating media outlets with increasing regularity.
These fabrications have proven difficult to identify and stop, and harder still to convince people they’ve seen something that isn’t real, particularly when it’s something that reinforces one of their existing beliefs. In fact, people are more likely to recall something that fits inside their worldview, even if it’s fraudulent.
Like anything else in the age of Instant Perception, it takes a fleeting moment to capture someone’s attention, and win their support. When the average American adult spends approximately 50% of their day interacting with media, every second counts.
It takes much, much longer to win someone back after they’ve made a snap judgment inspired by a false meme, video clip, or Photoshopped image.
Taken as a whole, this raises the question: if we can’t trust our own two eyes, what or who can we trust? In the next moment of crisis or perception problem, brands and public officials must be prepared to combat completely fabricated content from their adversaries.
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