The term deepfake has a relatively recent origin. It has been used to primarily discuss those types of technologies that have the ability to generate video, audio or text that are for all practical purposes indistinguishable from real-world alternatives. They have gained rapid prominence since the mid-2010s.
The rise of technology like artificial intelligence has allowed for this technology to be available universally, with little to no technical expertise required.
One of the earliest uses of the technology has been for the purpose of revenge and fake pornography. It has primarily been used to superimpose images on the bodies of actors to make it appear as though another individual is in fact performing those activities.
More recent uses of the technology have highlighted its impact on social, economic and democratic institutions. They can very easily be used to generate content attacking political opponents or falsifying an individual’s personal actions. This has raised a discourse on the topic.