Fake Obama speech is the beginning of the end of video evidence


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/07/17/fake-obama-speech-is-the-begin.html


Nasty possibilities, but the lip-syncing is still obviously poor.



I know it’s still early days, but the audio doesn’t quite sync with the video. And considering they’re using text that Obama actually said, changing the venue where he supposedly said it doesn’t seem as scary as it could be. If they were able to make an avatar convincingly say things Obama never said, then it’ll be sort of scary.

But they’ve been predicting this for years in Hollywood, haven’t they? Humphrey Bogart playing opposite Grace Kelly in the remake to “When Harry Met Sally,” or some such?

It’s the next logical step in our remixed world.



The researchers say that even though the video looks real, it’s easy to reverse engineer it and find out it’s a fake. But will this always be the case?

Yes, I believe it’s true. What scenario would make this video more difficult to reverse engineer in the future?


Yet another example of the difference between can do and should do.

What do you wanna bet the Republican party’s propaganda ministers are jizzing in their pants thinking what they can do with this?


They demonstrate at the end that they can splice and re-order lines from his speeches almost seamlessly to create new ones (it is noticeable, but then again we’re primed to look for the sudden transition). That is very scary and opens the doors for entirely new forms of character assassination.


To paraphrase Lenin, a faked video shown often enough on social media becomes the truth.


Apparently the Alpha Version running off a Word Salad database won the 2016 US Presidential Election.


I feel the same (watch how the creases next to his nose snap in and out of existence) but I have to wonder how easily I would have noticed how artificial it looked if I wasn’t aware of this technique or had my guard down or wanted to believe what I was seeing.


Who could have ever seen this coming?:


But does it even matter? The substance of online debates has become about the trustworthiness of witnesses and advocates anyway. When news organizations can report fairly straight, dry news and have it be refuted, why should any researcher “reverse-engineering” a video to prove it’s fake hold any weight. Trump could say he personally reverse-engineered any video about himself to prove it was fake, and a good portion of folks would take him at his word. If you really wanted to, you could probably make a better fake “evidence of reverse-engineering” video right now that is more convincing than this fake speech…


Have they faked Obama urinating on bedsheets in Moscow yet? Nick of time for that sort of thing to be fake-news.


OMFG I loved Max Headroom as a kid. Probably my first exposure to sort of a dystopian future. I really would like to rewatch those old shows.


No AI is powerful enough to do this with Trump. His words and manerisms are just too incomprehensible for any computer to simulate.


It doesn’t matter. People don’t care what people REALLY say half the time if they are on their side.


Not sure if it is on any streaming services but it is out on DVD.

On the topic of fake video evidence it is time for Camera companies to step up with digital signatures on video files to show footage isn’t tampered with. News will probably have to give access to raw footage.


This tech will come in handy assuming the Trump White House continues to ban video cameras in the press briefings. News TV can just reconstruct the video as necessary.


Scenario: The WILL to get to the truth in a system where the DoJ bows to Trump and even a few influential media outlets have nothing but good things to say about him.


That thought occurred to me, too, of improving the signatures. But verifying the verification itself could take time and by then the hot take has done its viral damage.

And in a world where experts are now viewed skeptically for some insane reason, it might not help much anyway. I’m thinking of the mental gymnastics of your typical Alex Jones acolyte who would dream up a conspiracy that Sony, Canon, et al are part of a socialist, global digital video cabal that exists solely to brainwash us blah blah blah… I worked with a guy earlier this year who still believes that “there’s something not right with the Obama birth certificates… those PDFs can be tampered with and I’m telling you that they look fishy.” It’s maddening to attempt to reason with someone like this. Unfortunately, some of us will continue to believe what we want regardless of how much factual evidence to the contrary is provided.