Reddit did something right.
Recently, Reddit shutdown two hubs—r/deepfakes and r/deepfakeNSFW. Both hubs were responsible for posting fake videos that featured “AI-generated, face-swapped porn,” TechCrunch reported.
Bye bye, deepfakes
We reported on deepfakes, the user who created a video that featured Gal Gadot’s face “face swapped” on a porn performer’s body, in early January 2018. Our main site, YNOT, also reported on this issue in December 2017.
In addition to banning hubs that “use algorithmic software to create virtual pornography depicting the likeness of unwilling participants… Reddit also updated its policy [concerning] involuntary pornography and the sexualization of minors,” adds TechCrunch. “The move follows similar crackdowns on Pornhub, Discord and Twitter.”
Reddit’s new policy
TechCrunch reported that the new Reddit policy states the following:
Reddit prohibits the dissemination of images or video depicting any person in a state of nudity or engaged in any act of sexual conduct apparently created or posted without their permission, including depictions that have been faked.
Images or video of intimate parts of a person’s body, even if the person is clothed or in public, are also not allowed if apparently created or posted without their permission and contextualized in a salacious manner (e.g., “creepshots” or “upskirt” imagery). Additionally, do not post images or video of another person for the specific purpose of faking explicit content or soliciting “lookalike” pornography.”
So far, Reddit hasn’t commented on how it plans to enforce its ban and new policy.
Fake, pirated porn is, unfortunately, popular
It’s not surprising that there are plenty of people who are drawn to “fake” porn.
Amber Gold, a YNOT writer, pointed out that plenty tongue-and-cheek celebrity impersonation porn clips exist; however, the deepfakes content isn’t even remotely comparable to these playful, consensual porn parodies.
First, deepfakes’ porn rendered a porn performer into faceless body. This performer was, basically, a vehicle for Gadot’s face, a tasteless action which degrades many people’s work — most egregiously though, the performer’s.
Secondly, deepfakes’ porn used the likeliness of Gadot. This act was, one can safely say obviously, not consensual.
Third, deepfakes’ porn merely stokes the fire for other creeps to dehumanize and devalue more sex workers and potentially face-swap faces of other un-consenting people.
Now, let’s get back to the popularity of fake, pirated porn…
TechCrunch reported that “before the time of the ban, r/deepfakes had a subscriber base of more than 92,000 members.”
One can only hope that people will eventually tire of poorly made fake pirated porn and patronize porn that respects performers who are paid to engage in consensual cosplay-type scenarios. But this is the real world, so we aren’t holding our breath.