back to article It took us less than 30 seconds to find banned 'deepfake' AI smut on the internet

Fake AI-generated pornography has been banned by sites including Reddit and Pornhub, but others operations say they're fine with the practice of putting celebrities' faces on porn actresses' bodies. Such videos are made possible by neural network technology that can learn the features of anyone’s face and maps it onto bodies …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    WTF?

    Ooopss

    sorry seemed to have stumbled onto the Daily Mail site.

    I'll go try find The Register instead.

    1. Mycho Silver badge

      Re: Ooopss

      To be fair, the Daily Mail announced that they had managed to find information on how to kill people with a car. That's much more serious.

      1. Jonathan 27

        Re: Ooopss

        What does it say about the Daily Mail that I can't tell if you're joking or not?

        1. Mycho Silver badge
      2. MrZoolook

        Re: Ooopss

        "they had managed to find information on how to kill people with a car."

        Running over them would seem to be both pretty effective, and easier than more elaborate ways.

        I'd think the fact this is such common knowledge, pretty much nullifies any attempt at praising them for a 'job well done'on the subject.

        1. Mycho Silver badge

          Re: Ooopss

          Wait, now the register contains information on how to kill people with a car?

          Quick! Buy shares in pearls. People will need new ones to clutch.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    “tolerate any nonconsensual content on the site”

    Who said that the porn actor has not granted consent?

    The Celebutards have no entitlement to grant or deny consent here. A Celebutard does not own the copyright to its likeness if produced by another person. If I draw a Celebutard with or without computer assistance I own the copyright. End of story.

    Going back to the fake videos. If the copyright holder of the porn actor/actress has been asked for permission to be used as a body double this is a totally legit video. So Reddit and Pornhub AUP does not stand to even minimal legal scrutiny.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: “tolerate any nonconsensual content on the site”

      has been asked for permission to be used as a body double this is a totally legit video

      Just to be clear - this is what the copyright law says on the subject.

      It is irrelevant if it is appaling, disgusting or simply a high tech version of these:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jINZBOxdja8

    2. PNGuinn Silver badge
      IT Angle

      "If I draw a Celebutard with or without computer assistance I own the copyright".

      Drawing a Celebutard. Hmmm. ....

      Doesn't that in itself make you feel just a little bit dirty?

      +1 for Celebutard BTW

  3. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

    So... when will the first case be heard should an innocent person be deepfaked onto a rumpypumpy video which causes said person to lose his/her job?

    1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Trump? Pee-pee? It's an interesting defence...

      1. Danny 2 Silver badge

        Yup, all the past years appalling videos and photographs of Trump have obviously been faked. It is simply not credible that the President of the United States of America would demean the office in that way.

      2. beast666

        I think the Clintons and Obama are in more need of an 'interesting defence' right now. Ha ha ha!

        Lock her up!

    2. S4qFBxkFFg

      "So... when will the first case be heard should an innocent person be deepfaked onto a rumpypumpy video which causes said person to lose his/her job?"

      Now that this technology is accessible to anyone with a PC + respectable GPU, the question of "guilty" or innocent is going to become irrelevant - people can just say "deepfaked - it wasn't me" when confronted with video evidence of them carrying out any activity they would rather keep secret.

      "Reasonable doubt" just got a whole lot bigger.

      (Yes, I know the videos produced still have identifiable artifacts - how long will that last?)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Now that this technology is accessible to anyone with a PC + respectable GPU, the question of "guilty" or innocent is going to become irrelevant - people can just say "deepfaked - it wasn't me" when confronted with video evidence of them carrying out any activity they would rather keep secret.

        This was somewhat investigated in the classic 1980s cinematic masterpiece The Running Man where a future was predicted when faces can me mapped in real time onto actors' bodies.

        Granted, they also predicted we'll all be driving Ford Tauruses and have big hair in the future, but close enough.

      2. David 164 Bronze badge

        Not long one suspects. Considering this was built by just one developer, who knows what the likes of GCHQ and NSA or Google, Facebook could develop with far larger teams and better hardware.

    3. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

      "will the first case be heard"

      Ive onlu seen the example pic in the last reg article , but i suspect we're a long way off the videos not being blindingly obviously fake if given a second glance.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        A long time ago we may have been a long way off - we are now there.

      2. Symon Silver badge
        Coat

        It might be "a long way off " but it's coming.

  4. Big Al
    FAIL

    Duh.

    "That response is, however, a part of the problem because relying on someone to flag such videos does not deter people from making more of them and uploading them to the internet."

    And short of preventing uploads at all, how exactly do you expect companies to control what is uploaded before it appears on their servers?

    1. phuzz Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Duh.

      "how exactly do you expect companies to control what is uploaded before it appears on their servers?"

      By checking the video after it's uploaded, but before it's made visible to the general public. Duh.

      That said, I doubt any automated process could easily catch a faked video, and if the video didn't feature well known actors (eg if someone put their ex's face into a pron vid) I doubt even a human moderator would catch it.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's the ultimate get-out excuse

    for Kompromat'ed politicians.

    1. Sanguma

      Re: It's the ultimate get-out excuse

      "Kompromat'ed politicians"

      I don't know about you, but I dream of the day - yes, I wake screaming and sweating and the cat has to see a psychiatrist afterwards - when I am forced to watch deepfaked movies of Jenna Jameson with Ronald Reagan's face, or Bill Clinton's, in flagrante delicto with someone else. Don't even mention President Trump's honeymoon videos with President Putin, please!!!!

  6. Lysenko

    Such videos are made possible by neural network technology that can learn the features of anyone’s face and maps it onto bodies in videos.

    Such videos are possible because some artists/cartoonists are capable of approaching photorealism and they now have tools more sophisticated than crayons to play with.

    I've seen porn featuring Slebs that was obviously created with a pencil and paper, other stuff created with photoshop, and now we're supposed to collapse in pearl-clutching horror because those 'shops have been stitched together into "moving pictures"!? Seriously?

    It's almost as bad as someone phoning around doing a Tom Baker impression. I mean, someone might think they have a genuine Time Lord on the line!

    1. DontFeedTheTrolls
      Coat

      There was a time when you could phone Tom Baker any time you fancied. Sadly that time is gone.

    2. Danny 2 Silver badge

      Marge Simpson never did those things.

    3. earl grey Silver badge
      Trollface

      pearl-clutching horror

      Are you sure those are pearls?

    4. SonofRojBlake

      The funniest one Dead Ringers ever did...

      Culshaw (doing Baker's voice, but in character as the Fourth Doctor) rang Sylvester McCoy, trying to get him to get involved in some world-saving escapade involving Sontarans or something.

      McCoy played along, and it became apparent that he believed it to be the real Tom Baker, roaring drunk.

      It also became apparent that this was not the first time it had happened...

      (Close second was when Culshaw rang Baker himself, who at one point asked "what can I do for you? If it's money you need, I'm not short of a shilling.")

  7. Pete 2 Silver badge

    Seeing the goods

    > In regards to flagging nonconsensual content, either the person who deems the content nonconsensual or their legal representative can use the form to request removal of content and cite that they themselves did not contest for it to be uploaded.”

    What about if the pr0n star who's body was used objects to it being associated with the famous person's head? Do they have a say in the matter? And have they got a way to prove that it was actually their body.

    Maybe it is time for pr0nstars to have a unique bar code tattooed somewhere on their skin. It would have to be in a place that would be readily visible in a porno. Hmmmm, where, exactly????

    1. onefang Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Seeing the goods

      "Maybe it is time for pr0nstars to have a unique bar code tattooed somewhere on their skin. It would have to be in a place that would be readily visible in a porno. Hmmmm, where, exactly????"

      Considering that in a lot of porn you often don't get to see uninteresting things like the guys face, pornstars have a tendency to have unique tatts and body jewelry that makes it easier to identify them.

      Welcome to Jamaica, and have a nice day.

  8. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    "It took us less than 30 seconds to find smut..."

    Yes, but I'm sure you've all had a lot of experience in the field...

  9. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

    Allegedly there's a video of David Cameron doing it with a dead pig. Oh, wait, that's not a deepfake.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      He didn't do it

      and having sex with a pig is only a crime if the pig is alive at the time.

      1. Ben Bonsall

        Re: He didn't do it

        not true, if done in public it may be a crime if anyone finds it offensive. almost certainly if done near a school

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: He didn't do it

          Close, it only requires the possibility that someone might find it offensive, and so is still technically a crime even if no-one else knows it happened.

      2. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

        Re: He didn't do it

        Were you there when he didn't do it?

    2. James O'Shea Silver badge

      vile slander

      That's not a pig, that's T. May Not. And she's not dead, except between the ears. And it is a fake, Cameron has _some_ principles and there are things which he just won't do. (Not very many things, to be sure, but some) That's really Tony Blair, faked up to look like Cameron. There's nothing that B-Liar won't do.

  10. CAPS LOCK Silver badge

    All this outrage is missing the significance of this...

    ...Now there's a porn use for AI the progress of the technology will accelerate substantially. The Ai we see in films will be factual in weeks...

  11. jake Silver badge

    I see teh intrawebtubes haven't changed teenagers appreciably.

    On the bright side, they eventually grow up.

    But, there's always a new crop of pre-teens waiting to fill the void.

    And so it was, and ever shall be.

    Can we as a species please grow up and get over being shocked for the sake of being shocked? It's getting very old ... and it's exactly the reaction that the people who "invent" this kind of thing are looking for. Stop playing into their hands, prudes!

  12. mark l 2 Silver badge

    Well not to worry as the UK is coming to the rescue and we won't be able to see any pr0n without the BBFC approving it first. So Mumsnet users let your kids run free on the internet and if they do see pr0n it's the government's fault not yours.

  13. DougS Silver badge

    Could mark the end of the celebrity/political sex tape

    If they are now indistinguishable from the real thing, they can now claim it is a fake. In fact, they could hire an actor and actress willing to say "yeah, that was us" and fake THEIR faces over that of the celebrity and partner to "prove" it wasn't them!

    1. Tim 11

      Re: Could mark the end of the celebrity/political sex tape

      TBH I don't really make a distinction between fake and real politician/celeb any more. They're all just bodies for hire to promote a product, and whether they're the "real thing", a human impersonator or a digital avatar doesn't make much difference.

  14. scrubber
    Childcatcher

    Creeps?

    People doing this are creeps, but bringing back dead people for Star Wars or adverts is technologically brilliant?

    I feel some moral judgements are being made here.

    On a more serious note, the ability to create material that would otherwise be illegal for therapeutic purposes is one of a number of socially beneficial uses for this technology.

    1. Mycho Silver badge

      Re: Creeps?

      Yeah, deepfaking a face onto a significantly different head doesn't work.

    2. handleoclast Silver badge

      Re: Creeps?

      On a more serious note, the ability to create material that would otherwise be illegal for therapeutic purposes is one of a number of socially beneficial uses for this technology.

      Maybe, in a limited number of cases. More generally, not.

      The statistics do seem to support the idea that if people men have porn to wank over they're less likely to commit sex crimes. There are exceptions, but overall more porn (for some values of porn) = less sex crime.

      Twenty or thirty years ago (I don't remember the date when it changed) UK parliament was of the opinion that fake child porn was OK, on the basis that it was better for somebody to wank over it than actually molest a child. Then it was pointed out that fake child porn could be used to entice and normalize "See, this little girl in the picture is doing it. She wouldn't be doing it if it was wrong. And she's enjoying it." So now such imagery is illegal.

      So, in general, it won't be permitted for therapeutic purposes. At least not without supervision to ensure the material is not copied for other uses. I doubt many people would wish to be a supervisor in such circumstances.

      No doubt it will be created by individuals for self-"therapeutic" purposes. And then distributed amongst like-minded people. And therefore be made illegal (if existing legislation doesn't already cover it, which it probably does.) Because it will also be used to entice and normalize.

  15. Chris Jasper

    Still not entirely certain why you would want to put someone else's face on a porn scene, also not certain why you had to go looking for it to write this article?

    1. LucreLout Silver badge

      also not certain why you had to go looking for it to write this article?

      Probably the first thing that came into his head when the Mrs caught him watching Pammy's sex tape again.

      "This isn't what it looks like.... I was erm, er, er, er.... just researching an article on celeb porn for El Reg. Honest."

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Article author is female.

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge
          FAIL

          Article author is female.

          And they're not supposed to have a Mrs?

          1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
            Facepalm

            Re: Article author is female.

            The comment referred to "his" and "him".

            Anonymous coward pointed out it was a female.

            I see your FAIL and raise you a FACEPALM!

  16. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

    Scope Creep

    If this tech can be used for faking pr0n, then it can be used to fake other things too, can't it? Evidence of crime, evidence of alibi, propaganda, defamation, "fake" news....

    In the hands of more sinister types than mere pr0n-mongers this could be extremely potent.

    1. DontFeedTheTrolls
      Boffin

      Re: Scope Creep

      Which is one of the reasons courts are very particular about the presentation of "taped" evidence.

      Never having been interviewed under caution but going on what I've read the machine makes two copies of the interview and the accused (or their legal council) retains one copy (audio and video). This is acceptable in court. That hidden dictation machine in your pocket - probably not admissible in court.

      Forensics these days can also detect tampering with recordings. Amongst the methods is analysis of the background electricity hum, something that cannot be faked and cannot be spliced

      1. jaduncan

        Re: Scope Creep

        "Amongst the methods is analysis of the background electricity hum, something that cannot be faked and cannot be spliced"

        If you have the data to verify it you can remove and fake it. It must be a predictable waveform to be tested.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Scope Creep

          Any attempt to fake it would be too perfect. True background hum varies by load, so it's present but inconsistent.

  17. Crisp Silver badge

    The Running Man is now reality.

    A click here, and a click there... And it looks like Ben Richards is dead.

    1. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

      Re: The Running Man is now reality.

      Read the book, watched the movie.

      IMO the book was better.

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: The Running Man is now reality.

        IMO the book was better.

        Books generally are. *

        * With some exceptions. Personally, I thought the movies better than Pierre Boulles Monkey Planet.

  18. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

    Simon? You reading this article?

    Make note, give us a good BOFH episode :)

    Thanks mate! :)

  19. The Nazz Silver badge
    Meh

    Not everyone will use it.

    I'd be willing to wager that a certain Mr Smith, he of parliamentary porn expenses infamy, would not be using this technology to superimpose his Mrs' fizzog onto the porn that he/she/the public taxpayer purchases.**

    New technology?

    Wasn't there a case a UK a few years back, a guy being done (amongst other things) for porn videos including sex with animals?

    Trial starts. Wasn't long before the Judge asked the CPS if it wasn't actually a cartoon animal they were watching.

    "Oh yeah" say the CPS "it is. Fancy that, in all our best professionalism (at public expense) we never even noticed." Either the technology was very good back then or the CPS shite at their job (or maybe the agenda bias got in the way, who knows).

    **That said, there could well be a case for using this technology to "cure" people of their porn habits. Sorry for this, but would you really want to watch porn with Ms Sturgeons superimposed onto it even if the true porn actress had a banging body?"

    1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

      Re: Not everyone will use it.

      **That said, there could well be a case for using this technology to "cure" people of their porn habits. Sorry for this, but would you really want to watch porn with Ms Sturgeons superimposed onto it even if the true porn actress had a banging body?"

      And I used to joke about Janet Reno porn... (for those on your side of the pond, think Margaret Thatcher after she went on an all-night bender).

      1. John G Imrie Silver badge
        Gimp

        think Margaret Thatcher after she went on an all-night bender

        I'm sure I could find someone to buy that.

        1. Mycho Silver badge

          Re: think Margaret Thatcher after she went on an all-night bender

          Lots of people were open about being sexually attracted to Maggie.

          1. Sanguma

            Re: think Margaret Thatcher after she went on an all-night bender

            You should read JG Ballard's "Why I want to fsck Ronald Reagan." He could be talking about this sorty of thing, with his "assembly kits" ...

            1. onefang Silver badge

              Re: think Margaret Thatcher after she went on an all-night bender

              "Why I want to fsck Ronald Reagan."

              Ah, that explains a lot, data corruption.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Eroge

    So much easier to do if your particular preference is for animated characters to begin with Bonus points for you if your particular series of interest started out as an Eroge Game.

    And if your desired characters/voicebanks already have models for MMD, the complexity is simply mapping out the movements.

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Eroge

      So much easier to do if your particular preference is for animated characters to begin with Bonus points for you if your particular series of interest started out as an Eroge Game.

      And if your desired characters/voicebanks already have models for MMD, the complexity is simply mapping out the movements.

      Well, yes. Also possible with Facegen and applications like Smithmicro Poser or Daz studio. Not a vast amount of look-a-likes about if you prefer to buy than craft your own, but I think most of the popular ones from Game of Thrones have been done.

      This whole palava has mostly blown up becasue A.I. in the title.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Rees-Mogg explained?

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Rees-Mogg explained?

        Nothing could explain Reese-Mogg, except possibly Omen 2.

        Seems like the result of a south park episode where someone tried to clone John Steele from Avengers for a political role, with a horrendous back-fired plot.

  21. Brian Allan 1

    The technology is available. It will be used. And the porn industry is one of the first to use the latest technology...

  22. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    1. Mycho Silver badge

      Re: Deepfakes Community

      The question here is why The Register is hosting information about how to access this material.

      I mean we could report it but meh, it's their job to sort that out.

  23. Michael Thibault

    Plausible deniability

    Develop, within the porn industry, an arrangement where the body is provided by one person, the face by another -- with the upshots *cough* being that both the body-providing individual retains anonymity -- is thus spared public notoriety -- and the face-provider -- who could even contribute via 'face-capture' shooting -- is known not to have engaged in whatever 'sex' is portrayed in that film? It would create a remove, or distance, from the tawdry aspects -- if any -- of in-frame participation in porn film production.

  24. Matthew Taylor

    Puddlefakes

    I couldn't resist, I took a look on the subreddit before it got taken down. I was not impressed, to be honest. The porn-y fakes looked especially rubbish, barely resembling whoever they claimed to be impersonating. That said, actual realistic versions are surely in the post.

  25. Ruisert
    Devil

    Pornhub is NSFW?

    Who'da thunk?!?

    1. onefang Silver badge

      Re: Pornhub is NSFW?

      "Who'da thunk?!?"

      Depends on what you do for a living. I used to be in charge of a popular web filter used by local schools. Sometimes I had to surf porn sites, purely for professional code maintenance reasons. I would warn the rest of the office (glass walled cubicles), most wouldn't care, some would stand behind me and watch.

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