This week, Facebook and Instagram began running ads for a deepfake app that show actresses like Emma Watson and Scarlett Johansson initiating sexual acts. According to a report from NBC News, this app rolled out more than 230 ads across the company’s platforms — despite Facebook explicitly banning content like this.
After it was notified about this ad buy, Facebook acted quickly to remove it from the platform. However, some users have expressed concern that this kind of technology could do serious damage to people’s lives, especially young users. To make matters worse, we are likely only seeing the beginning of how it could be used.
“This could be used with high schoolers in public schools who are bullied,” said Lauren Barton, a journalism student who brought the ads to public attention. “It could ruin somebody’s life. They could get in trouble at their job. And this is extremely easy to do and free. All I had to do was upload a picture of my face and I had access to 50 free templates.”
Thankfully Facebook has policies in place to deal with AI-generated adult content. However, it needs to do a better job detecting it so troubling examples like this don’t fall through the cracks
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