Tom Dobber presented his research experimental study on a deepfake of a Dutch politician in several national Dutch media. Together with Nadia Metoui, Damian Trilling, Natali Helberger, and Claes de Veese, Tom discovered that almost all participants believed that the deepfake was in fact a real, non-manipulated video. After seeing the deepfake, participants in the experimental group held significantly worse attitudes toward the depicted politician than participants in the control condition did.
In the deepfake, the depicted Christian politician ostensibly makes a joke about Christianity. The researchers expected that the deepfake would especially negatively affect Christians. But, zooming in on Christians, the researchers found out that the effect was especially negative for only a rather specific group: very religious people who had voted for the politician’s party before.