Given the amount of nonsense we are all exposed to online, I often think about how we can maintain trust in the internet age.
With more information being created by AI robots and scammers, scepticism will grow, and trust will diminish, but how can we work to maintain it?
A Weird Technology
I came across the term "deep fake" recently, which is "fake" media produced digitally. It's an AI technology that allows people to create picture, video and audio content that isn't real.
For example, I could create a video of you telling everyone you love eating chocolate cake for breakfast. The technology is so good that only you will be able to say if you actually said it or not; the average person who watches the video will not be able to tell the difference.
Now, there are huge risks that this technology gets into the hands of the wrong people who use it as a tool to spread disinformation and hate speech; there are also many opportunities that arise from it.
For example, if you are an ambassador for a brand and must do a promotional media shoot for them. Rather than flying across the world to some remote location with a massive media production team, you could get some smart person to create deepfake content of you promoting the brand. All you need to do is agree to the media they create and get paid without having to do anything. It's a win-win, the brand spends less on the promotion, and you can get paid sooner.
This is just one example, and it's clear how someone with bad intentions can easily abuse it.
This is why being a conscious consumer of news and media is more important than ever and will only increase as time goes on.
In terms of companies that are working hard to maintain trust for their customers, Wikipedia is doing a great job at it.
Wikipedia is Leading the Way
Whilst researching for this post, I was reading the definition of deepfake on Wikipedia, and the message below popped up (focus on the second paragraph):
It’s as if the recommender algorithm knew what message I was trying to portray and gave me the perfect example to help explain it.
There is an opportunity for us to ensure we act with integrity and honesty in our physical and virtual interactions. Wikipedia is a clear leader and an example to follow in this space.
The founder of Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales, has created a platform called TrustCafe to help fight the spread of misinformation on social media platforms. If you want to learn more, you can read about it here.