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Tom Hanks Ai Controversy Explained

Anybody can now recreate themselves at any age they are by way of AI or deep fake technology,

A commentary on USA Today’s Article “Tom Hanks alleges dental company used AI version of him for ad: ‘Beware!!’” by Naledi Ushe

Tom Hanks’ recent Instagram post, where he highlighted an unauthorized AI-generated representation of him in a dental advertisement, brings to the forefront a concern that’s been simmering for some time in the entertainment industry. With the proliferation of AI in content creation, the boundaries of authorship, identity, and intellectual property are becoming evermore blurred.

“Anybody can now recreate themselves at any age they are by way of AI or deep fake technology,” Hanks says, indeed, as AI technology evolves, the ease with which a persona, whether it be an actor’s or a writer’s, can be imitated or recreated becomes troubling. This isn’t just about celebrity likenesses in ads, but about the authenticity of content, be it a film performance, a song, or even a book.

The comment by podcast host Adam Buxton, that audiences would discern the difference, especially in specific stylistic choices, is poignant. While AI can produce content, the nuances that make a Tom Hanks performance or a Hemingway piece distinct can’t be wholly replicated. Hanks’ counter-question, “Without a doubt people will be able to tell, but the question is, will they care?” is also thought-provoking.

As audiences become more accustomed to AI-generated content, will they become less discerning, or will they yearn for the genuine authenticity that only humans can provide?

The concerns of the Writers Guild of America, as highlighted in the article, underline the significance of these questions. With AI becoming an increasing point of contention in negotiations, it’s evident that the concerns are not just about pay and rights but about the core of what it means to create.

Enter platforms like, a tool designed to aid writers in transforming their initial concepts into full-fledged manuscripts. Yet, even in its design, is cautious. While the tool could theoretically imitate the distinct style of an iconic author, it actively discourages such direct mimicry. Why? Because the thin line between inspiration and imitation is what defines the essence of creativity. Every creator, whether a writer or an actor, brings something unique to the table – a blend of their experiences, beliefs, and idiosyncrasies. AI, as advanced as it might be, can’t replicate that depth of individuality, at least not yet.

As AI technologies like deepfakes and writing assistants proliferate, the entertainment industry, and society at large, will need to grapple with questions of authenticity, ownership, and the very nature of creativity. It’s a brave new world out there, and the rules are still being written.

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Sean Vosler


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