Deepfakes: False Pornography Is Here and the Law Cannot Protect You

By: Douglas Harris

It is now possible for anyone with rudimentary computer skills to create a pornographic deepfake portraying an individual engaging in a sex act that never actually occurred. These realistic videos, called “deepfakes,” use artificial intelligence software to impose a person’s face onto another person’s body. While pornographic deepfakes were first created to produce videos of celebrities, they are now being generated to feature other nonconsenting individuals—like a friend or a classmate. This Article argues that several tort doctrines and recent non-consensual pornography laws are unable to handle published deepfakes of non-celebrities. Instead, a federal criminal statute prohibiting these publications is necessary to deter this activity.

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Cite: 17 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 99

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