Ofcom Receives Complaints Over Channel 4's Deepfake Version Of The Queen

The broadcaster created a deepfake version of Her Majesty for their alternative Christmas message to warn about fake news.

Channel 4′s deepfake version of the Queen’s speech has attracted more than 200 complaints to TV watchdog Ofcom.

The 25 December broadcast used digital trickery to make an actress look like the Queen in the network’s annual alternative Christmas message.

In what was billed as a warning about misinformation and fake news, “Her Majesty” joked about Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departure from the UK, as well as nodding to the scandal surrounding the Duke of York.

Channel 4 created a deepfake version of the Queen
Channel 4 created a deepfake version of the Queen
Channel 4

Ofcom has confirmed it had received 214 complaints since it aired on Christmas Day, shortly after the Queen’s official annual televised message to the nation on the BBC, ITV and Sky News.

As is standard procedure, the broadcasting regulator will assess the complaints before deciding whether to formally investigate.

Ian Katz, director of programmes at Channel 4, described the deep fake Christmas message one as “a powerful reminder that we can no longer trust our own eyes”.

Deepfake technology has become increasingly prevalent over recent years and can be used to create convincing but completely manufactured video content of high-profile figures, most notably of former US president Barack Obama, who has been the subject of a number of deepfake videos.

In the alternative speech, the digital version of the Queen performed a TikTok dance routine and revealed her penchant for “Netflix and Phil” with the Duke of Edinburgh.

It has previously been delivered by whistle-blower Edward Snowden, actor Danny Dyer, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Doreen and Neville Lawrence, children who survived the Grenfell Tower disaster and The Simpsons.


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