SAG-AFTRA Rallies Behind Taylor Swift as Deepfake Images Scandal Takes Over Internet, Releases Its Official Stance

Published 01/26/2024, 7:45 PM EST

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The Taylor Swift deepfake image debacle took the spotlight this week, creating shockwaves across the internet. Nonconsensual and explicit deepfakes of Taylor Swift hit the airwaves on X, formerly Twitter, and went viral with a meteoric rise of 27 million views and 260,000 likes within a mere 19 hours before the account responsible for the mayhem got the ax. This disturbing incident has prompted US politicians to advocate for new legal measures criminalizing the creation of deepfake images.

Following the government’s call, SAG-AFTRA has shed light on its stance regarding the entire issue and articulated the union’s plan to root out this offense.

SAG-AFTRA lent its support to Taylor Swift

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In a recent official statement, SAG-AFTRA has declared its stance on the emerging internet culture of sharing deep fake celebrity images, asserting that it “must be made illegal“. The union expressed its distress over the incident involving Taylor Swift as being “upsetting, harmful, and deeply concerning”. As a result, SAG-AFTRA has thrown its weight behind Congressman Joe Morelle’s Preventing Deepfakes of Intimate Images Act, aiming to legislate against the recurrence of such exploitative incidents. 

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The American labor union remained relentless in its support for Taylor Swift and women globally facing the theft of their privacy and right to autonomy. US Representative Joe Morellet labeled the circulation of the pictures as “appalling“. In an official statement on X, he declared his commitment to actively removing the images and undertaking “appropriate actions” against the accounts responsible for their dissemination. Many of the images are now unavailable as of the time of publication. However, one photo of Swift reportedly garnered 47 million views before its removal. 

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Following the disturbance they caused, a few of the wrongdoers have now started to confess and identify themselves.

Accounts responsible for the deep-fake images 

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The tech companies overseeing social media platforms have been reportedly struggling to tackle the task of cracking down on abusive content. At the same time, people involved in this offense have come to light. According to Newsweek, an X user, @Zvbear, participated in sharing inappropriate AI images of Swift, later making their profile private. In one post, the user remarked, “My Taylor post went viral, and now everyone is posting it.”

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Acknowledging potential criticism, they disclosed that if Netflix were to produce a documentary on AI-generated images, they would be cast as the “villain“. The user then implemented heightened privacy measures by protecting their tweets and restricting visibility to an exclusive group of approved followers. Meanwhile, on X, several other accounts, including @CharlotteAI, @antiofclub, @AIforBNWO, and @AICELEBIMAGES, remain active, pushing out more AI content.

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What do you think about SAG-AFTRA’s statement? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Hriddhi Maitra

814 articles

Hriddhi Maitra is a Hollywood News reporter at Netflix Junkie. An enthusiastic movie buff, Hriddhi found her true calling when she worked as a Cinema Content Writer at My Cinema Story while analyzing movies objectively, and offering constructive feedback. Coming from a background where she worked in different niches like finance, food, travel, medicines, automobile, and entertainment, we can safely say she is a jack of all trades.

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