HomeTop StoriesMegan Thee Stallion is the latest victim of deepfake pornography

Megan Thee Stallion is the latest victim of deepfake pornography

Happy Tuesday! Here’s your Tuesday Tech Drop, the week’s biggest stories at the intersection of politics and the seemingly everything-comprehensive world of technology.

Megan Thee Stallion speaks out against AI pornography

Rapper Megan Thee Stallion appears to be the latest celebrity victim in the disturbing trend of non-consensual deepfake pornography. The artist, whose open celebration of her sensuality has made her a target for misogynistic rap fans, appeared to respond to deepfake videos circulating online. NBC News reported that it reviewed 18 posts on social media platform X that contained the fake video, some of which were later deleted.

States are working to make the phenomenon of deepfake pornography illegal, as there is currently no federal law on the books. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., has said she has also been a victim of deepfake pornography and is one of the most vocal lawmakers in Congress calling for legislation to combat the trend.

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Read more at The carrot.

Battle of the Billionaires

Co-founder of LinkedIn and liberal financier Reid Hoffman wrote an op-ed for The Economist, speaking out against tech executives and other wealthy elites who are throwing their support behind Donald Trump. Hoffman argues that by looking out for their own bottom line through the more favorable tax rates Trump has promised, they are rejecting the success they have seen under President Joe Biden while underestimating Trump’s illiberal behavior.

He wrote:

Read the entire article The economist.

Connectivity issues

Congress allowed a major pandemic-era subsidy that provided internet access to millions of Americans to expire at the end of May. The Biden administration has struck a deal with internet providers to keep costs down until Congress (hopefully) approves a new round of funding for the subsidies. In the meantime, some Americans may be at risk of losing access. As NPR notes, the potential lack of internet access is putting some crucial lifelines, like telehealth appointments, at risk for Americans in need.

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Read more at NPR.

Go GOPes all in for deepfakes against Biden

The Washington Post has an article detailing how Republicans are using so-called cheap fakes and other doctored videos of Biden’s D-Day commemoration performance to misrepresent the president’s health and mental fitness. It is certainly not the first time that right-wing parties have used manipulated video to portray Trump’s political opponent as someone in poor health.

Read more at De Washingtonpost.

Elon’s apple rage

Apple has announced a partnership with artificial intelligence giant OpenAI, maker of AI chatbot ChatGPT, to integrate its technology into Apple devices. Technology mogul Elon Musk, who is trying to develop his own AI tools to compete with OpenAI, is apparently furious and has threatened to ban Apple devices from his companies over what he claims are privacy concerns. It’s truly an ironic line of attack, considering the security issues its own social media platform has shown in the past.

Read more at CNBC.

Trump-friendly media

Talking Points Memo details a bizarre business deal between the Trump campaign and Right Side Broadcast Network, a channel known for its overt pro-Trump propaganda (despite its leadership’s claims of independence and objectivity). The story epitomizes the Trump campaign’s reliance on right-wing news media to spread its message.

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Read more at TPM.

AI and climate change

Writer Dave Roberts hosted a discussion with artificial intelligence researcher Alp Kucukelbir about the potential applications of AI to combat the effects of climate change. The conversation is a refreshing look at the positive potential of artificial intelligence at a time when its misuse – such as its use in creating deepfakes – is making headlines.

Listen to the conversation here.

Another trial-related hoax on social media

My colleague Jordan Rubin has a post on Deadline: Legal Blog about the right-wing hysteria over a debunked claim that a juror leaked news of Trump’s criminal conviction in New York to a family member who shared the news on Facebook before the verdict. Conservatives previously raised similar false claims that the judge’s wife in Trump’s civil fraud trial had posted anti-Trump attacks on her social media account when she had not.

Read Jordan’s message here.

YouTube’s Firearms Policy

YouTube announced last week that it is banning users under the age of 18 from viewing certain content related to firearms.

“From June 18, 2024, certain content showing how to remove security features will be banned. “Content showing the use of homemade firearms, automatic firearms, and certain firearm accessories is age-restricted,” YouTube said.

Read the announcement here. And read The Hill’s coverage of the announcement here.

This article was originally published on MSNBC.com

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