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Reddit bans 'Deepfakes' subreddit, the home of the fake Witcher porn

We reported back in January about "Deepfakes," a redditor and eventual subreddit dedicated to the creation of pornography featuring celebrity faces—such as those of characters from The Witcher—laid over those of the actual performers. The process is enabled by a "machine learning algorithm" and the results, for the most part, are fairly convincing—and also alarming, as it puts us on the cusp of a future in which anyone can be made to do anything in a "real" video.

That aspect of it has now led to the removal of the Deepfakes subreddit, which was banned earlier this afternoon for violating Reddit's "policy against involuntary pornography."

"Reddit prohibits the dissemination of images or video depicting any person in a state of nudity or engaged in any act of sexual conduct apparently created or posted without their permission, including depictions that have been faked," the relevant rules state.

"Additionally, do not post images or video of another person for the  specific purpose of faking explicit content or soliciting 'lookalike' pornography."

That seems pretty clear, and the name of the subreddit itself was an obvious red flag too. But even though Deepfakes is gone from Reddit, it will almost certainly surface somewhere else: The subreddit was approaching 90,000 subscribes before Reddit pulled the plug. 

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.