Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/newsletters/action/archives/id/11487
Short Stories: August 03, 2022 Issue [#11487]

 This week: Is Seeing Still Believing?
  Edited by: Shannon
                             More Newsletters By This Editor  

Table of Contents

1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions

About This Newsletter

Welcome to the Short Stories Newsletter. I am Shannon and I'm your editor this week.

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Letter from the editor

It seems false accusations and defamation are on the rise. Numerous high-profile cases have been highlighted in the news over the past couple of years, and these incidents were exposed for what they were: lies, fake news, and intentional deception. But what about cases in which there appears to be videographic evidence? "I'll believe it when I see it" is a phrase we're all familiar with, but these days it couldn't be further from the truth.

Deepfakes are videos that seemingly depict people saying or doing things they never said or did, and they're frighteningly realistic. It's getting harder and harder to detect deepfakes, and the motive behind such forgeries varies from entertainment to political annihilation of one's opponents to revenge--usually against women in the form of revenge porn.

"Deepfakes are fake videos created using digital software, machine learning, and face swapping. Deepfakes are computer-created artificial videos in which images are combined to create new footage that depicts events, statements, or actions that never actually happened. The results can be quite convincing. Deepfakes differ from other forms of false information by being very difficult to identify as false." ~ webwise.ie  

Step Brothers

Deepfake version of Step Brothers with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone

The Schwarzenegger/Stallone version looks much more interesting, but I digress.

"All of those images that you put of yourself online have exposed you. And you gave it up freely. Nobody forced you to do it, it wasn't even stolen from you. You gave it up." ~ Hany Farid,  

This sounds a bit like victim blaming to me, especially when it comes to women who have been disproportionately victimized by this technology after posting online selfies only to find their faces superimposed onto the faces of other women in pornographic videos. While the majority of these victims are celebrities, it has impacted the lives of regular women as well.

As technology advances and deepfakes become more and more difficult to identify, some researchers   have dedicated themselves to perfecting deepfake detection by enlisting the public's help. This   website shares 32 video and audio examples, half of which are fake, to determine how discerning the average person is when it comes to identifying deepfakes. Can you spot the phonies?

People feel they can no longer trust what they see or hear. What is real? What is fake? All I know for sure is that Tom Cruise is NOT my president, unfortunately. Alas, there's always 2024.

Has your protagonist been victimized by deepfake technology? How did she clear her name? How did he defend himself against the false accusations? Every registered author who shares their ideas and/or creative endeavors relating to or inspired by this week's topic will receive an exclusive trinket. I will retire this month's limited-edition trinket at 11:59 p.m. WDC time on Tuesday, September 27, 2022, when my next short stories newsletter goes live.

A swirly signature I made using the Mutlu font and a drop shadow.
Newsletter Archives  (E)
A listing of all my newsletters in one easy-to-find place.
#1555482 by Shannon

Additional Reading:
1. Deepfakes and National Security  
2. You thought fake news was bad? Deep fakes are where truth goes to die  
3. The Distinct Wrong of Deepfakes  
4. How a deepfake Tom Cruise on TikTok turned into a very real AI company  
5. Deepfakes – The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly  

Editor's Picks

I hope you enjoy this week's featured selections. I occasionally feature static items by members who are no longer with us; some have passed away while others simply aren't active members. Their absence doesn't render their work any less relevant, and if it fits the week's topic I will include it.

Thank you, and have a great week!

A Case Of Mistaken Identity  (13+)
Can there be any meeting in an alley between a man and a woman that ends well?
#2161460 by Donkey Hoetay

Meeting in a Cemetery  (18+)
An unexpected meeting leads to the resolution of a family feud
#2071077 by ☮ The Grum Of Grums

"I Hate Early Morning Visitors"  (13+)
Lou Ryan, 1930's Private Detective, in the Windy City.
#1387741 by Ẃeβ࿚ẂỉԎḈĥ

Interview with an Innocent Man  (18+)
A reporter interviews a man on death row.
#1242930 by Legerdemain

 Mabel And The Mob  (13+)
Mabel ends up with the mob's money
#909604 by W.D.Wilcox

Night's Solace  (13+)
A (rather long) short story about a very lonely prisoner
#1184672 by Nicola

 What it Tastes Like  (E)
A young man is arrested and feels the damn hurt.
#1533780 by jsyingling

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Word from Writing.Com

Have an opinion on what you've read here today? Then send the Editor feedback! Find an item that you think would be perfect for showcasing here? Submit it for consideration in the newsletter!

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Ask & Answer

The following is in response to "What If?:

*Vignette5* ~

Wash Your Sox Already! writes: I loved the outer limits including the reboot where Beau Bridges took the Martians and began raising them in a sand pit in his barn.

*Vignette5* ~

BIG BAD WOLF Wants Chocolate writes: I've written, or added to, a lot of things. Some of them border on these sorts of topics. What if Alien Werewolves showed up, either as friends, or foes? What if Humanity co-existed alongside Sapient Lizardfolk, and there's a deal going on between them? What if Anthropomorphic/Fantasy/Sci-Fi beings showed up and shrunk humans to be pets? Lots of possibilities.

*Vignette5* ~

W.D.Wilcox writes: When I was a teenager I woke up one night and saw a tall hooded thing next to my bed. I couldn't move, or shout out because I was so frightened. Then, as I watched, it just dissipated. I've never forgotten that.

*Vignette5* ~

dragonwoman writes: I have written several stories about aliens visiting Earth, one took place in Niagara Falls.

*Vignette5* ~

Jeff writes: "What if" scenarios sometimes go through my head as a thought exercise, but I honestly don't spend too much time worrying about things that haven't or might not ever happen. That's not to say I don't believe in preparing for emergencies or saving for a rainy day, but I tend to focus on the "here and now" more than the "what if someday."

*Vignette5* ~

Beacon's Valentine ⚓️ writes: I've read the stories and I heard it can be scary.

*Vignette5* ~

dogpack:saving 4 premium: DWG writes: My sister watched these TV shows much, much more than I did. I do better reading than watching a TV show or movie. What If plays in my mind but sometimes not as much as it should and other times too much.

*Vignette5* ~

eyestar~* writes: Wow! You ask some thought-provoking questions. I liked the Twighlight Zone too! I don't really think that far ahead. I figure in the moment I will be guided as to what to do, what is possible, and if we really co-create our own reality. I want to be as clear of fear as I can and trust what will be is what will be for the best .. somehow ... I hope! Awesome newsletter. Thanks for the links.

*Vignette5* ~

Lilli 💜's☕️ 🧿 writes: Wow! This has been an exciting and powerful newsletter!! Thanks for not only sharing the info, but the links too. Great work!!

*Vignette5* ~

The following item was submitted by its author:

 My Loving Family  (ASR)
DISTORTED MINDS CONTEST: family affairs twisted, welcome to my world.
#2262028 by dogpack:saving 4 premium: DWG

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