AI poses election threat, regulations needed, expert warns

This is one of the dark sides of AI.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly evolving, offering solutions across various industries. However, experts warn of a potential dark side: AI-powered manipulation in elections worldwide.

John Allen Hendricks, chairman of the Department of Mass Communication at Stephen F. Austin University, raised concerns during a recent conference. He emphasized the need for regulations to curb the misuse of AI, particularly regarding “deepfakes” – realistic, fabricated videos that can be used to smear candidates or spread misinformation.

“The world is in the early stages of AI technology,” Hendricks said, “and mistakes are inevitable.” He pointed to instances where deepfakes have been used to depict politicians making false statements, potentially swaying voters.

Hendricks stressed the vulnerability of social media, a key platform for political campaigns. “Social media allows for direct communication between politicians and voters,” he explained. “However, the lack of regulations in many countries allows anyone to create fake accounts and spread disinformation anonymously.”

This lack of oversight creates a breeding ground for unethical tactics. “People can hide behind fake identities and say things they wouldn’t dare say otherwise,” Hendricks noted.

In contrast, Hendricks believes traditional media – television, radio, and newspapers – still act as gatekeepers, ensuring a level of authenticity. However, he acknowledged a growing distrust towards these outlets, leading voters to rely more heavily on social media.

Source: PNA
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