BJP used deepfakes in Delhi campaign: Report

Updated: Feb 19, 2020, 09:18 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

Vice reported that the party bombarded at least 1.5 crore voters with doctored videos of Manoj Tiwari speaking in Haryanvi and English

Manoj Tiwari. File pic
Manoj Tiwari. File pic

Bharatiya Janata Party employed Artificial Intelligence and deepfakes during the recent Delhi election campaign, American digital publication Vice reported on Tuesday. Deepfakes, derived from deep learning and fake, are synthetic, doctored media like videos, in which a person from an existing image or video is replaced with someone else's likeness or made to mimic someone else's actions.

The report said that on February 7, just one day before Delhi voted, two videos of the BJP's chief ministerial candidate Manoj Tiwari criticising the Arvind Kejriwal government went viral on WhatsApp. It said one video had Tiwari speaking in English and the other was him speaking in Haryanvi. "[Kejriwal] cheated us on the basis of promises. But now Delhi has a chance to change it all. Press the lotus button on February 8 to form the Modi-led government," he was seen telling in the video.

Tiwari, a well-known Bhojpuri movie star and singer, doesn't speak any Haryanvi and is not so fluent in English. The report said the Delhi BJP IT Cell partnered with political communications firm The Ideaz Factory to create "positive campaigns" using deepfakes to reach different linguistic voter bases, marking the debut of deepfakes in election campaigns in India.

"Deepfake technology has helped us scale campaign efforts like never before," the report quoted Neelkant Bakshi, co-incharge of social media and IT for BJP Delhi, as saying. "The Haryanvi videos let us convincingly approach the target audience even if the candidate didn't speak the language of the voter." These deepfakes, the report added, were distributed across 5,800 WhatsApp groups in Delhi and the NCR region, reaching approximately 15 million people.

Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

Sign up for all the latest news, top galleries and trending videos from Mid-day.com

Subscribe
This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK