The Cyberspace Administration (CAC) in Beijing has issued regulations prohibiting the creation of AI-generated "deepfakes" of humans without it's permission. The regulations also prohibit the depiction or utterance of anything that could be considered counter to the "national interest" or "socialist values", as well as the use of deepfakes to deceive or slander.
Deepfakes are controversial because they use artificial intelligence to create realistic videos of humans saying and doing things that they did not actually say or do. This technology has the potential to mislead audiences and cause problems for the people depicted in the videos.
Deepfakes have also sparked debate outside of China because of these concerns. Earlier this year, the European Union introduced rules to curb the use of deepfakes to fight back against fake news on social media.
However, the regulations also suggest that China expects deepfakes to be used widely in the future, as they allow for their use in applications like chatbots as long as they are clearly labeled as digital creations.
The regulations issued by the CAC also address the use of deepfakes by online publishers. These publishers must take into account China's other rules regarding acceptable online content when using deepfakes in their publications.
The regulations apply to "deep synthesis service providers," or platforms that use deep learning or virtual reality to alter online content. These requirements include the need for accurate and regularly revised AI/ML models and algorithms, as well as the need to ensure the security of any data collected. Additionally, the regulations require the registration of users, including the use of their real names, in order to prevent unknown individuals from misusing the technology.
The regulations issued by the CAC are intended to ensure that the use of deepfakes in China avoids potential downsides and instead delivers benefits to the country. The regulations state that deepfakes must "promote the healthy development of internet information services and maintain a good ecology of cyberspace."
These rules will go into effect on January 10, 2023.
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