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Misinformation, Disinformation, and Polarization

A guide to fake news, bad journalism and social media reaction

Photojournalism, Memes and Misinformation

Is seeing is believing or is believing is seeing? This video, which was made for the Gwinnett County Public Library by photographer, Ashley Kauschinger, explores the role of photography as a tool for journalism, social change, and disinformation. It explores issues of context, content, confirmation bias, framing, deepfakes, shallow fakes and provides advice for figuring out if what you are seeing is truth, falsehood, or somewhere in between. 


The term deepfake is typically used to refer to a video that has been edited using AI to replace the person in the original video with someone else (especially a public figure) in a way that makes the video look authentic.

Below is a side by side video, produced by the University of Washington, that demonstrates the techniques used in creating deepfake videos

How to recognize "deep fakes."  With out high tech video forensics, you have to rely on critical thinking and by paying attention to these details:
  • Does it over blur comparing with other non-facial areas of the video?
  • Does it flicker?
  • Does it have a change of skin tone near the edge of the face?
  • Does it have double chin, double eyebrows, double edges on the face?
  • When the face is partially blocked by hands or other things, does it flick or get blurry?
  • Does the person blink at a normal rate

This advice comes from the articles listed below.

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