A new article by Clifford Lynch, “Managing the Cultural Record in the Information Warfare Era,” is now available in EDUCAUSE Review 53, no. 6 (November/December 2018), and freely available for download:
“Several rapidly emerging lines of technology development and exploitation are converging, and they are going to change the world in the next decade. They will have massive social and political impact; indeed, we are already far down that path, as I’ll discuss shortly. These trajectories will create new complexities for a wide range of scholarly investigations. They will challenge us to rethink the way we define and teach information literacy. They will demand that memory institutions such as libraries and archives reconsider the documentation and contextualization of the cultural record, and they may even drive the creation of new public infrastructure supported by memory institutions and responsible content creators and distributors.
Fully exploring these developments requires a book (at least), but I will try to give a very high-level sketch here, with some limited pointers to additional information (much more can be found with a little Googling). My hope is that the reader will be able to see the broad trends.
The first development is the ability to fabricate audio and video evidence. Software that can do this is becoming readily available and doesn’t require extraordinary computational resources. If you want to produce a persuasive video of someone speaking any script you’d like and if that person has a reasonable amount of available recorded video, you can synthesize that video into the fabrication software.1 The obvious place for this is politics: pick your target politician, put words in his or her mouth, then package this into propaganda or attack ads as desired…”
Click here to read the full article.