Legislation & Government

Latest Stories

Swift Response: US Senators Introduce Bill to Combat AI-Generated Pornography

Written by: Molly-Anna MaQuirl | Posted: 19-02-2024

Swift Response: US Senators Introduce Bill to Combat AI-Generated Pornography

This is an AI-generated image created with Midjourney by Molly-Anna MaQuirl

US senators have moved quickly to try to make changes to the law so they can enforce against those who create AI Deepfakes, or “digital forgeries' in response to a series of fake pornographic images of Taylor Swift that recently went viral.

The Bill will be known as the ‘Disrupt Explicit Forged Images and Non-Consensual Edits Act of 2024 or, suitably named, the “Defiance Act.”

This will lead to a civil penalty that can be brought against those who either produce or possess the forgery with the intent to distribute it to others.

Senators from both sides of the house moved to create a new bill to criminalize the creation and sharing of sexualized images that are generated by AI. This was partially accelerated by a trend of people creating AI Deepfakes of Taylor Swift, shared on X, Reddit, and other digital platforms.

There has been a big trend towards AI’s use in many industries, and this is not the first case of “digital forgeries” as people look to exploit the fame of celebrities. The latest AI changes quickly, and the industry sometimes moves faster than the law can.

Senator Dick Durbin, who is the majority whip, along with Lindsey Graham, Amy Klobuchar, and Josh Hawley have signed the bipartisan bill.

Durbin released a press release explaining the perils of the new type of adult images and the fact that the fakes are often convincing: 

This month, fake, sexually explicit images of Taylor Swift that were generated by artificial intelligence swept across social media platforms. Although the imagery may be fake, the harm to the victims from the distribution of sexually explicit ‘Deepfakes’ is very real." 

The images spread to millions of views, showing the power of Deepfakes and the fact that they can be made by almost anyone and distributed widely around the world. They continue becoming more common as more AI tools become publicly available – and many feel it is time for people to act.

Microsoft Designer was reportedly the software used to create these images, and Microsoft has since said that they have removed a loophole that made it possible to create these types of images.

Nobody – neither celebrities nor ordinary Americans – should ever have to find themselves featured in AI pornography. Innocent people have a right to defend their reputations and hold perpetrators accountable in court. This bill will make that a reality.” explained Josh Hawley. 

Swift Protection

Tay Swifts fans (commonly known as ‘Swifties’) quickly fought back when the deepfake images were released. They started to share the term “Taylor Swift AI” with wholesome and legitimate clips of her. As the negative press continued, Elon Musk’s X took the step of stopping all of the searches that included Taylor Swift in an attempt to prevent people from finding or redistributing the images.

‘Swifties’ tried to drown out the images from the search and prevent people from finding them, protecting the privacy of their idol and preventing her from being targeted by these images.

Soon, we could see that there are many stricter guidelines put in place in the US and further afield to protect victims of digital forgeries.

Explore More News

Swift Response: US Senators Introduce Bill to Combat AI-Generated Pornography

Written by: Molly-Anna MaQuirl | Posted: 19-02-2024

Swift Response: US Senators Introduce Bill to Combat AI-Generated Pornography

This is an AI-generated image created with Midjourney by Molly-Anna MaQuirl

US senators have moved quickly to try to make changes to the law so they can enforce against those who create AI Deepfakes, or “digital forgeries' in response to a series of fake pornographic images of Taylor Swift that recently went viral.

The Bill will be known as the ‘Disrupt Explicit Forged Images and Non-Consensual Edits Act of 2024 or, suitably named, the “Defiance Act.”

This will lead to a civil penalty that can be brought against those who either produce or possess the forgery with the intent to distribute it to others.

Senators from both sides of the house moved to create a new bill to criminalize the creation and sharing of sexualized images that are generated by AI. This was partially accelerated by a trend of people creating AI Deepfakes of Taylor Swift, shared on X, Reddit, and other digital platforms.

There has been a big trend towards AI’s use in many industries, and this is not the first case of “digital forgeries” as people look to exploit the fame of celebrities. The latest AI changes quickly, and the industry sometimes moves faster than the law can.

Senator Dick Durbin, who is the majority whip, along with Lindsey Graham, Amy Klobuchar, and Josh Hawley have signed the bipartisan bill.

Durbin released a press release explaining the perils of the new type of adult images and the fact that the fakes are often convincing: 

This month, fake, sexually explicit images of Taylor Swift that were generated by artificial intelligence swept across social media platforms. Although the imagery may be fake, the harm to the victims from the distribution of sexually explicit ‘Deepfakes’ is very real." 

The images spread to millions of views, showing the power of Deepfakes and the fact that they can be made by almost anyone and distributed widely around the world. They continue becoming more common as more AI tools become publicly available – and many feel it is time for people to act.

Microsoft Designer was reportedly the software used to create these images, and Microsoft has since said that they have removed a loophole that made it possible to create these types of images.

Nobody – neither celebrities nor ordinary Americans – should ever have to find themselves featured in AI pornography. Innocent people have a right to defend their reputations and hold perpetrators accountable in court. This bill will make that a reality.” explained Josh Hawley. 

Swift Protection

Tay Swifts fans (commonly known as ‘Swifties’) quickly fought back when the deepfake images were released. They started to share the term “Taylor Swift AI” with wholesome and legitimate clips of her. As the negative press continued, Elon Musk’s X took the step of stopping all of the searches that included Taylor Swift in an attempt to prevent people from finding or redistributing the images.

‘Swifties’ tried to drown out the images from the search and prevent people from finding them, protecting the privacy of their idol and preventing her from being targeted by these images.

Soon, we could see that there are many stricter guidelines put in place in the US and further afield to protect victims of digital forgeries.