New ‘DEEPFAKE’ YouTube Series From The Makers of South Park Takes Place In Cheyenne
You can't always believe everything your eyes and ears try to show you, especially when it comes to the internet.
The makers of South Park have a brand new deepfake YouTube series, complete with a very convincing Donald Trump lookalike, just in time for the 2020 election called Sassy Justice with Fred Sassy, that is said to take place in our capitol city of Cheyenne, Wyoming.
The official Sassy Justice YouTube channel caption for the first episode would lead one to believe it is indeed real. It states:
Fred Sassy is an American Consumer Advocate and reporter for the Cheyenne news at 9, a local TV station in Cheyenne, Wyoming. On his weekly show, Sassy Justice, Fred goes to battle for the common man in his hometown. This week, he’s uncovering the dangers behind manipulated videos that are increasingly popping up on the internet.
All that sounds authentic, but a little bit of research shed the light on the obviously satirical video. First of all, there is no Channel 9 News in Cheyenne. I will admit, after watching the full 14-minute video, the production behind this project is superb! The Donald Trump doppleganger could easily fool even the most dead-eyed Snopes fact checker.
Furthermore, although I haven't been able to 100% validate it, it appears to really be Academy Award winning actor, Sir Michael Caine and Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg in the video and not just lookalikes. Full disclosure, if they are fakes, they are the best ones I've ever seen.
The entire video pokes fun at deepfakes in the modern world, in particular, President Trump often saying "fake news". For those unfamiliar with the word, Wikipedia defines deepfakes (or deep fakes) as:
synthetic media in which a person in an existing image or video is replaced with someone else's likeness. While the act of faking content is not new, deepfakes leverage powerful techniques from machine learning and artificial intelligence to manipulate or generate visual and audio content with a high potential to deceive.
To be honest, I'm not one to normally watch a YouTube video longer than 3 to 5 minutes, but beyond the comedy aspect of it all (and the fact that it takes place in our backdoor), I really was intrigued by the actors, both authentic and counterfeit.
To make it all seem even more believable, the makers created a website, a Twitter profile, a Facebook page and an Instagram account. That's dedication.
I can't wait to see more hilarious content. That is in case the creators get sued.