Published on Friday, 05 January 2018 00:00
Written by Jack Hoff
What a time to be alive. With the invention of Virtual Reality goggles, and now a new AI software that allows anyone's face to digitally replace a pornstar's, the future of porn is here and now.
Gone are the days where you can only fervently hope that your celebrity crush will make a lapse in judgment and create a sex tape, which will eventually leak to the public so that you can see his/hers glorious nudity and provocative sexual acts.
A video of Gal Gadot having sex with her step brother on the internet pioneered the dawn of AI-assisted fake celebrity porn. The video was created with a machine learning algorithm, using easily accessible materials and open-source code that anyone with a working knowledge of deep learning algorithms could put together.
On the surface, it really does resemble the Wonder Woman actress, but if you look closer, you'll notice that something is a little bit off, because the software is far from perfect and sometimes the face doesn't track correctly and there's an uncanny valley effect at play.
What's amazing is that this imitation Gal Gadot porn is supposedly the work of just ONE very horny otaku, who goes by the username “deepfakes” on Reddit, and not the production of a big special effects studio with unlimited budget and tons of staff that will help with the CGI.
Deepfakes uses open-source machine learning tools like TensorFlow, which Google makes freely available to researchers, graduate students, and anyone with an interest in machine learning.
Like the Adobe tool that can make people say anything, and the Face2Face algorithm that can swap a recorded video with real-time face tracking, this new type of fake porn shows that we're on the verge of living in a world where it's trivially easy to fabricate believable videos of people doing and saying things they never did. Even having sex.
So far, deepfakes has posted hardcore porn videos featuring the faces of Scarlett Johansson, Maisie Williams, Taylor Swift, Aubrey Plaza, and Gal Gadot on Reddit.
Deepfakes has garnered a massive fan base, no doubt with the majority made up of prepubescent teenage boys who can't get any. To compile the celebrities’ faces, deepfakes said he used Google image search, stock photos, and YouTube videos. Deep learning consists of networks of interconnected nodes that autonomously run computations on input data. In this case, he trained the algorithm on porn videos and Gal Gadot’s face. After enough of this “training,” the nodes arrange themselves to complete a particular task, like convincingly manipulating video on the fly.
“I just found a clever way to do face-swap,” deepfakes said, referring to his algorithm. “With hundreds of face images, I can easily generate millions of distorted images to train the network,” he said. “After that if I feed the network someone else's face, the network will think it's just another distorted image and try to make it look like the training face.”
However, if you think that all is well and good because you're a selfish human being and would just like to satisfy your primal urges to the image of a sexy celebrity doing it, without caring about whether the celebrity in question would be traumatized by it, think again. We live in the age of social media where thousands of our photos can easily be accessible by strangers. No one is really safe from having their faces CGI-ed into a porn video. Be afraid, be very afraid.