The Queen of England will read your traditional Christmas message and the official video will be broadcast on BBC and on ITV. O Channel 4, however, will bet on a parallel message, in which a realistic representation of the queen appears in a tampered video and created with deepfake technology. The goal is to serve as a warning about the advent of fake news and fake digital content. Deepfake technology, remember, can be used to create convincing and real-looking messages, and can also be used to spread misinformation.
Nobody at Buckingham Palace wanted to comment on this initiative. It is known that part of the deepfake video will show participation in a viral dance contest on TikTok. In the fake video, we will be able to see the ‘queen’ making jokes about controversial topics, such as the decision of the Dukes of Sussex to leave the United Kingdom or the abandonment of the Duke of York. A correspondent from BBC, who has seen the video, reveals that it is not particularly impressive, recalls that there are several imitations of the queen circulating and explains that the voice in this deepfake is ensured by British actress Debra Stephenson.
The deepfake video was created by Framestore, a virtual effects studio that has already won an Oscar.
Deepfake videos started to gain notoriety in 2017, when specialists were able to use technology to change the face of one person for another, in a realistic and convincing way. There are now apps available to users that allow you to upload just one photo to realistically replace the face, for example, of a famous actor. Earlier this year, Microsoft launched a tool that can detect deepfakes, but experts warn that it could be quickly overtaken by advances in creative technology.
It should be remembered that there are also Portuguese celebrities who are victims of deepfakes, such as Exame Informática recently revealed.