VIDEO: Deepfake technology makes stunning advancement as Rasputin sings Beyonce

Are we living in a post-reality world?

I understand precisely how absurd that statement sounds, but the answer could very well be “yes”.

You see, we really are beginning to live in two separate “worlds” thanks to the advent of the internet, and its continued interjection into our daily lives.  For instance, while many of us have a few bucks in the bank, they are utilized far more often in the parallel dimension that the internet provides.  Credit cards, debit cards, PayPal, Venmo, and Apple Pay all take our banks’ 1’s and 0’s and translate that information across the world wide web in place of the nearly-archaic practice of carrying actual money with us.

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Our money, while real somewhere, in some vault, is just data in instances of actual, daily use.

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In much the same way, so is all of our media.  We get our news most often from the internet, and from sources far and wide.  The issue here is that, in the digital dimension, there are tricks and schemes the likes of which could never be perpetrated in our real, living world.  Deepfakes – synthetically created videos of anyone saying or doing anything – are just such a threat, especially in the realm of politics.

The “reality” that we believe we’re witnessing on the internet is being manipulated with terrifying precision.  Just take this latest video of Russian Mystic Grigori Rasputin singing along to a Beyonce song as an example:

Sure, it’s a bit wonky, but we have to remember that the limited amount of data surrounding the appearance of Rasputin, (of whom no video footage exists), is the only limiting factor here.

In the case of celebrities and politicians for whom we have ample video data to extrapolate from, the results are downright dumbfounding.

With 2020’s US election right around the corner, and our understanding of Russia’s attempts to disrupt American democracy, there lies a potential for this technology to create complete chaos throughout social media.

So, how will we bring reality itself back into the mix?  The terrifying reality is that we don’t really know.

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