Everything is not always as it seems
On a public service announcement posted to Buzzfeed News, Barack Obama warns people of potential fake news and the dangers they pose.
"We’re entering an era in which our enemies can make it look like anyone is saying anything at any point in time, even if they would never say those things,” says Obama.
But, the video reveals that it as actually the comedian/director Peele who is speaking the words. Obama's mouth was digitally rendered to mirror the words.
"This is a dangerous time. Moving forward, we need to be more vigilant with what we trust from the internet," Peele says as the video splits in half to show he and Obama speaking at the same time.
Jordan Peele has impersonated Barack Obama several times before on his comedy sketch series Key and Peele.
The eye-opening PSA is a project co-developed by Peele and Jonah Peretti, CEO of Buzzfeed. Peretti also happens to be the older brother of Chelsea Peretti, actress, comedian and wife of Peele.
According to the Buzzfeed news story, Peretti describes his interest in fake news and how it is shaping the web. Originally, there were fake news articles, but people are becoming more aware of these dangers.
"Now we’re starting to see tech that allows people to put words into the mouths of public figures that look like they must be real because it’s video and video doesn’t lie," says Peretti.
This particular PSA was produced by Jared Sosa, who used Adobe After Effects and FakeApp to manipulate the footage. Both a readily available to anyone on the internet to use and to manipulate anything.
In January, FakeApp made headlines by putting Nicholas Cage into movies he didn't appear in.
"What I learned from this whole thing is that while it will still require a good deal of human intervention, this kind of thing is not only possible but going to get a lot better," Sosa said about the process.
Jordan Peele ends the PSA warning viewers to stay woke and to rely on trusted news sources.
“It may sound basic, but how we move forward in the Age of Information is gonna be the difference between whether we survive or whether we become some kind of fucked-up dystopia.”
This is the best advice for moving forward. Technology is rapidly advancing and what was a 56-hour process to manipulate Jordan Peele's voice onto Barack Obama will become much easier.
It's up to us to "stay woke" and learn which sources to trust.
What do you think about the Buzzfeed video?