“Deepfake” isn’t a new type of beauty cream, an underwater virtual tour or even a sternly worded insult. It is in fact, the culmination of decades worth of audio and video editing methods combined with cutting-edge artificial intelligence and machine learning. 

Despite the fact that most people have come across it on YouTube, Facebook and other places, most actually don’t understand what is involved in it. Why is it so revolutionary and terrifying? What makes it that much different than existing techniques? Why does it have the potential to allow actors, actresses and more to create new content years after they are gone? Let’s find out. 

What is a deepfake?

Deepfakes first entered the public consciousness in 2018, with a demonstration video with President Obama in conjunction with comedian Jordan Peele. We’ll address why that particular video was so effective later, but the core idea of a deepfake is essentially taking media of one person and using it as a template to create a new video of another.

Now some could argue that this has been in place conceptually for years and years now. Take, for instance, “Forrest Gump,” which showcases Tom Hanks meeting historical figures such as

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