The Fake News is in the Fake News once again. Or rather, artificial intelligence may be in the Fake News. This shouldn't be surprising, as we've seen articles about new technologies that can simulate virtually anyone saying or doing anything. But this story, shared by T.S.,  should sober even the most skeptical:

'Dangerous' AI offers to write fake news

A couple of days ago I blogged about robots replacing humans, even as clergy in a kind of "robo-religion", and how robots are already being quietly and indirectly taxed. But imagine the news being written by an artificial intelligence (and being read by a robo-"anchor-person" on camera). It's not too far off:

An artificial intelligence system that generates realistic stories, poems and articles has been updated, with some claiming it is now almost as good as a human writer.

The text generator, built by research firm OpenAI, was originally considered "too dangerous" to make public because of the potential for abuse.

But now a new, more powerful version of the system - that could be used to create fake news or abusive spam on social media - has been released.

The BBC, along with some AI experts, decided to try it out.

The model, called GPT-2, was trained on a dataset of eight million web pages, and is able to adapt to the style and content of the initial text given to it.

It can finish a Shakespeare poem as well as write articles and epithets.

At the time, the firm said: "Due to our concerns about malicious applications of the technology, we are not releasing the trained model. As an experiment in responsible disclosure, we are instead releasing a much smaller model for researchers to experiment with."

As the article also indicates, the BBC decided to test the public version of the program, and came up with this:

The BBC decided to test the system by inputting the first few sentences of a recent story, appropriately one about AI.

We began with the first sentence of the real story:

Chinese search engine Sogou is creating artificial intelligence lookalikes to read popular novels in authors' voices.

Here's what the text generator came up with to complete it:

According to the researchers, this method of reading is not just the brainchild of Amazon Kindle users. Users of Android devices are also a notable market for fake reading. There are several theories to explain this.

Firstly, the device in a user's hand is different from the tablet or computer they are reading on. Secondly, the device used to access the Internet might be tampered with in some way. A third reason is the user may just copy and paste content directly into their virtual characters.

However, another explanation is that the device does not have voice recognition capabilities at all. If this is the case then voice recognition is more advanced than Google's translation engine. As such, these users are tricked into thinking they are reading from a real author - the book is made to sound authentic as soon as they try and read. (Emphasis in the original)

As the article also notes, however, a professor of computer science at the University of Sheffield, Noel Sharkey, tested the program, and wasn't too impressed:

" I tested the software with numerous headlines and got laughable results. For example, for 'Turkeys hate Christmas', I got that 'Turkey is the only nation in the world that doesn't celebrate Christmas' and a number of unrelated sentences.

"For 'Boris Johnson loves the backstop', it produced incoherent gibberish and some stuff about AI and sport. When I input the statement that 'Boris Johnson hates the backstop', I got a more coherent story that appears to have been pulled off a Google search."

Dave Coplin, founder of AI consultancy the Envisioners, also had a play with the system, inputting the first line of a classic joke: A man walks into a bar...

The suggestion from the AI was not what he was expecting: "...And ordered two pints of beer and two scotches. When he tried to pay the bill, he was confronted by two men - one of whom shouted "This is for Syria". The man was then left bleeding and stabbed in the throat".

But it should be noted once again, these results were obtained with the publicly released version of the program. We've no idea of what the private tests yielded, but with a vast expansion of parameters (including search parameters), it's a safe bet that the results were somewhat better. Indeed, there have been stories of computer-AI-generated "science" papers that in spite of being pure gibberish were accepted by serious journals for publication because they "sounded" authentic.

So where am I going with all of this? What's the high octane speculation?  The problem, it would seem, is this: in this era of everyone claiming that such-and-such a story is "fake news", one wonders how much of that actually is being generated, in part, by AIs writing and planting fake stories. Consider only the story of President Trump supposedly saying he wanted to disrupt hurricanes by nuking them. He has denied it of course, and frankly, when I heard the story I thought it was fake. (What's not fake about the story were the 1950s studies of weather modification using nuclear weapons, but that's another blog for another day.) But whether it's fake or not, or whether Trump's denials are fake or not, it raises a crucial issue: with enough search parameters and computing power, the sky may be the limit.  One possibility is that AI's become the editors of humanly-generated stories, modifying texts according to present (and probably ideological) parameters and filters. As I pointed out in a blog just a few days ago, some ebooks have already been marketed which contained texts not written by their original purported authors. Could it be that the "updaters" of these texts were not humans at all? I suspect the answer to that question is a qualified "yes."

Indeed, I've entertained in private discussions with a few people about the whole "Q" phenomenon that it represents not only a clever psyop by a team, but that it had to have access to some sophisticated and not-publicly-available search techniques and computing power. As a result, a powerful "narrative" can be (and has been) created with its own following. What I believe we've been watching is a kind of "beta-test" of sophisticated social engineering techniques to be rolled out in a much more general and dangerous way, one requiring - again - sophisticated search parameters, and a lot of computing power, to generate carefully crafted propaganda.

So how to counter it? Like everything else, I suspect that the answer is in part analogue, in this case, real research by real humans using antiquated things like card catalogues, books, newspaper articles, cross-checking, indices, and so on.

See you on the flip side...

Posted in

Joseph P. Farrell

Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and "strange stuff". His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into "alternative history and science".


  1. emlong on September 7, 2019 at 9:43 am

    AI is not necessary to achieve such speculative effects. Organic intelligence has been doing it to humans for millennia.

  2. zendogbreath on September 3, 2019 at 12:34 am

    Um, this may seem unrelated to everything we do here. Or it might seem related directly to everything we do here.
    Special Feature: SAFIRE PROJECT 2019 UPDATE

    This feels far more real than everything else we are shown these days. Is anyone starting to understand why an old not wealthy guy wants to go back to school in electrical engineering?

  3. Pierre on August 31, 2019 at 7:12 pm

    @ Will Powers… though I won’t testify as to any ‘modification’ on digital media. Kenneth Grant (voodoo) was another that someone said one could not find.

    Q is for Quantum, or Q bit. Shore’s algorithm to sort very efficiently (O (n) ) . The’ve done a triple spin configuration recently (reminds me of a transistor, or the first digital computer).

    . take input lead-in words.
    . make gibberish.
    sort gibberish compared to all available digitalised texts.
    . output the most popular near matches given grammar rules etc.

    a bit like enough monkies randomly typing away to make Shakespeare.

    add Spin media Cycle, Soap of advertisements and Hope fodder, small screens and failing eyesight, Virtue of Repetition, Fear Porn, Relativisation of Everything except resistance, and it’s business as usual on steroids. I need to practice up on my Fake Plastic Surprise gestures.

  4. Loxie Lou Davie on August 31, 2019 at 8:12 am

    First off, I would say “Let’s hear it for the Libraries”!!!! Second thing….it blows my mind that our votes here in the U.S. must first to Spain to be tabulated….WHO set THAT up?!!

    “Q” Anyone listened to Stewart Swerdlow??? He claims Trump was approached in 2013 by the “Q” Group, made up of certain Military Intel & 3 “others”. What I can’t figure out is why would a man of Trump’s age & station in life WANT to do what he is doing & then be giving away his salary to boot???!!! Makes no sense, does it?! Hmmmm.

    Unless……the Looking Glass is involved & he knows ahead of time what is down the road! Has anyone seen the Dan Burish videos?? So much FAKE EVERYTHING these days….we probably wouldn’t believe The Truth is we were TOLD it!!! 😉

    • zendogbreath on September 1, 2019 at 12:09 am

      I noticed Swerdlow making the rounds in alt yt channels last week. Is anyone familiar with this guy? The interview I saw was with Eisenhower’s grandaughter. Swerdlow’s family history is in itself interesting. Seems like he’s scrubbed that reputation with all sorts of ufology among other new age stuff. In the interview I saw he chatted about visiting memorial to the Russians killed by his grandpa and apologized and got told by everyone “fogeddabotit” and laughed it off. Sounded like he was imitating a wise guy.

  5. marcos toledo on August 30, 2019 at 7:32 pm

    Unfortunately the AI will be used to spread the usual lies that have been past off as truth. Same ends just the mouthpiece will not be directly human the puppetmasters can hide deeper in the shadows away from prying eyes.

    • Will Powers on August 31, 2019 at 6:22 pm

      First: I am not a robot. I write a blog and you may thank God for libraries, but information is being suppressed everywhere, including libraries. Try and find any information on Robert Sarbacher, preeminent scientist in the 1940’s, a physicist and rocket scientist, as famous as Robert Obenheimer in his day and you can’t even find a Wikipedia page on him, or a mention of him in any library encyclopedia. It’s like his life was dropped down the memory hole, and why: he talked honestly about what he knew on the subject of UFO’s. I heard this info on Dark Journalist, and investigated it myself and wrote about it in this story:

      • TRM on August 31, 2019 at 11:43 pm

        First page an lots of hits on “Robert Sarbacher” via DuckDuckGo. Same on google. Hmmmm

  6. zendogbreath on August 30, 2019 at 5:41 pm

    Brings to mind the advantage Cambridge Analytica exercised over Google in deterimining the 2016 election. CA was working in real time on the micro. There’s apparently a fictionalized history thriller drama coming out about it. Forgot the name. Think I saw it first mentioned by Brendon O’Connell.

    The thought being that changing searches to drive the searchers’ opinions is Google. Doing that instantaneously on an individual basis with full complete feedback and recalibration is CA.

    Consider voice cancelling headphones. You can scream and not hear a thing. Or one of those oddly equipped folk who can sit and speak every word you say as you say it. A bit of instantaneous echolalia. Consider if this can be done with your thoughts as you’re thinking them. Consider if it’s already been and being done.

    Is that the reason for the sincere lack of privacy in all we do? Are we being modeled and then molded? How would we know? What would we think about it? Wouldn’t it necessarily be badly done and a bad think to do at the start? Is there some way to make it feel a good think to do once it’s done more skillfully? Kinda like the transition to our needing a smart phone to be functional in this society?

    • goshawks on August 30, 2019 at 9:35 pm

      ZDB, the savants, “those oddly equipped folk,” are one of my hopes for humanity. Individually, each one has amazing abilities; impossibly beyond human-norm (often, at a cost elsewhere). Including psychic/spiritual abilities. Collectively, they are pointing-out how we should be . When whatever is ‘holding us down’ is withdrawn or knocked-over, we may look a lot more like that…

      • zendogbreath on August 30, 2019 at 11:55 pm

        Keeps giving me a Childhoods End reminder.

  7. DanaThomas on August 30, 2019 at 1:20 pm

    Now there are incongruities in media headlines that a person with even an average cultural background can detect (hopefully). Like “nuking a hurricane”. It has to be headlines and maybe a couple more sentences because most web surfers do not go beyond this. These incongruities are designed to trigger “cognitive dissonance”; the actual or supposed concept conveyed in the words forming the phrase is secondary.

    • zendogbreath on August 30, 2019 at 5:54 pm

      It does give the impression that the Donald is in on and on to the game. No matter what crazy spam he gets tossed by reporters, he catches and tosses back unphased. cavefefe much? It’s all a joke and he’s more in on it than the rest of us and looks pretty confident the jokes not going to be on him.

  8. Robert Barricklow on August 30, 2019 at 12:06 pm

    In some cases the AI would be better than mainstreaming the current propaganda. At least some AI might goes against script[if programmed by a genuine human, and not some wannabe successful lobotomized human].
    These kindle & android[so true] readers may as well cut to the chase and get the e-book Cliff Notes.

    Like the mathematical, approaching infinity concept; these AI are approaching fake perfections.

    It’s a safe bet ifs it cheap and can be 100% controlled…
    it’s a done deal!

    In the 21st Century it is not: A News Flash!
    It’s a Ministry of Truth News Flash Correction!/in a micro-second instantaneous/worldwide flash/it’s a done deal!

    A lot of computing power? Um?

    So it’s back to the future…
    reading Analog[ue-like] Magazine[s] of the 1930’s.

    [Russian typewriters are ahead in The Spy vs Spy game.]

    • Robert Barricklow on August 30, 2019 at 12:09 pm

      spelled correctly

    • Robert Barricklow on August 30, 2019 at 12:14 pm

      Not to mention the AI’s ability to fake people in both audio/visual formats; and now: reading & writing.
      [I guess we can skip the arithmetic part of that trifecta.]

  9. Bryce on August 30, 2019 at 10:48 am

    OK folks, I can’t quit laughing. RE: Q tripcodes/googestapo books.
    Yup, AI digital chicanery.
    I had a list of the 11 tripcodes that magically disappeared from my computer.
    No doubt, folks like “free” stuff & I’d betcha these were parked somewhere for a free download complete w/edited text.
    Looky looky whose book was not on the lists when I went through pages of the suggested reading materials. It’s there now.
    2nd book down.

  10. goshawks on August 30, 2019 at 6:52 am

    If you want to really “bake your noodle” (to use the Oracle’s phrase in The Matrix), combine the cited article with the concept of a Holoweb . In this scenario, there is basically a ‘man in the middle’ attack going-on. When you type-in the URL of a site you want to visit, your computer gets directed to a mainframe somewhere. That supercomputer generates a mock-up of the site you believe you are visiting, except with substitutions/modifications to play you in whatever manner is needed. This ‘adjusted’ site is what you read on your screen. It may ‘adjust’ for just one site, or for the whole internet. You will never know, except through your intuition. How’s your paranoia-rating, now?

    • Bryce on August 30, 2019 at 10:54 am

      My guess is that’s the alpha.
      Perhaps bookmarks should be indexed to the numeric IP.

    • Robert Barricklow on August 30, 2019 at 12:17 pm

      Reminds me of a friend whose signature line was,
      Are we there yet?

    • zendogbreath on August 30, 2019 at 5:50 pm

      Goes to Cambridge Analytica comment above. So above as below so.

      At least that was my understanding of CA. Curious to add a twist on to yours. Take another step off the twig. How many man in the middle’s can there be. Are we seeing such in deep staters playing narratives off each other to control and guide us? Does this define Q?

      One minute the Donald is ranting about calling out to protect AIPAC from the big bad Squad anti-semites and the next minutes AIPAC is calling out DT and Bibi to just let the Squad in? Confusing.

      Btw, I just heard an interview of the latest Google whistleblower Voorheis ranting about how whistleblowers and pedo uncoverers like Tommy Robinson were being censored by Google. Anyone familiar with Tommy Robinson here? He was actually trying to wreck the UK’s case against the biggest pedo ring in Britain that they’d built for years against a ring of Moslems? And then he gets nabbed on phonevideo ranting pro zio stuff?

      • emlong on September 7, 2019 at 9:40 am

        They want to to “let the squad in” because their rantings are doing so much damage to the democrats.

  11. anakephalaiosis on August 30, 2019 at 6:04 am

    Fundamentally, I consider all lies to be disruptive of spatiotemporal balance. Lies are false sea maps, that bring sea voyage to dire straits.

    Distinction, between Druidic time and Roman time, is, that former is spatiotemporal, and latter is only temporal.

    My point is, that a practical time keeper (Raspberry Pi), that can switch between Druidic time and Roman time, will address the original “fake news”.

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