Inside the Reluctant Fight to Ban Deepfake Ads

4 weeks ago 32

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

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