LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – With the rise of the presence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in society, Michigan will likely sign into law legislation prohibiting its use in campaign materials in the form of deepfakes. 

Deepfake AI is a variety of artificial intelligence that creates convincing images, audio, and video hoaxes. 

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“Deepfakes often transform existing source content where one person is swapped for another,” according to TechTarget. “They also create entirely original content where someone is represented doing or saying something they didn’t do or say.” 

One of the greatest concerns with the altered media when not used in jest, is the spread of false information that appears legitimate. 

The legislation would require campaigns on the state and federal level to explicitly state which advertisements in the state were made via AI. Additionally, it would forbid the use of AI generated deepfakes within 90 days of an election without a separate disclosure identifying how the media was manipulated. 

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State Representative Penelope Tsernoglou (D-East Lansing) emphasized the importance of the bill package ahead of election season. 

“Artificial Intelligence continues to evolve, while simultaneously becoming more and more popular,”  Tsernoglou said. “Ahead of the 2024 election, we must ensure that political advertisements containing audio, videos or images that were generated by AI are properly labeled, so that voters are not misled by fake or digitally altered content.”

Representative Matt Bierlein (R-Vassar) also cosponsored part of the package, and highlighted the need for transparency. 

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“Artificial Intelligence is a rapidly evolving technology,” said Rep. Bierlein. “As we go forward, it’s going to have an even greater impact on our elections process and how people consume political information leading up to elections. Transparency is crucial as this technology moves forward.” 

Across the pond, the European Union has taken strides to codify rules for AI use through the European Union AI Act. Alex Engler, a fellow in Governance Studies at The Brookings Institution pointed out how the two have had different approaches to the rise of AI. 

“There’s a growing disparity between the U.S. and the EU approach [to regulating AI],” Engler said

He later added that it would make it more challenging for the U.S. to pass its own laws since companies would not want to follow two sets of rules for two different markets. 

“Corporate interests will fight tooth and nail if you have two dramatically different standards for online platforms,” he said.

The Governor is expected to sign the bills into law in the near future, which would add Michigan to a growing list of states with deepfake regulations including California, Minnesota, Texas, and Washington.