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Deepfakes in the courtroom: US judicial panel debates new AI evidence rules

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On Friday, a federal judicial panel convened in Washington, DC, to discuss the challenges of policing AI-generated evidence in court trials, according to a Reuters report. The US Judicial Conference’s Advisory Committee on Evidence Rules, an eight-member panel responsible for drafting evidence-related amendments to the Federal Rules of Evidence, heard from computer scientists and academics about the potential risks of AI being used to manipulate images and videos or create deepfakes that could disrupt a trial.

The meeting took place amid broader efforts by federal and state courts nationwide to address the rise of generative AI models (such as those that power OpenAI’s ChatGPT or Stability AI’s Stable Diffusion), which can be trained on large datasets with the aim of producing realistic text, images, audio, or videos.

In the published 358-page agenda for the meeting, the committee offers up this definition of a deepfake and the problems AI-generated media may pose in legal trials:

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