VT professor talks AI’s effect on disinformation

Published: May. 26, 2023 at 3:14 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BLACKSBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - With technology rapidly progressing, misinformation can be easily created and spread by anyone.

“For very little money, people can get in and get on these platforms; some of the platforms are actually free, create disinformation content, and then spread it. And then there are social media sites devoted to disinformation,” said Cayce Myers, Virginia Tech Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the School of Communication.

He says people need to be conscious of the information they’re consuming.

“Now, we have a lot of disinformation that goes viral, and just because something is viral does not mean that it is true, so we do have to have some media literacy on the part of users, but a lot of the responsibility is also falling back to those platforms that create this disinformation.”

Fast changing technology makes the job of detection even more difficult.

“What I think that you’ll see with disinformation is that it’s going to be a part of our new communication reality,” Myers said. “People are going to have to learn to live with it, but they’re going to have to learn to process it and understand and filter out what’s true and what’s fake.”

Myers says being up to date on current technology can help people detect what’s real and what’s not.

“There is a lot of good things about AI and there’s a lot of positive ways that it can be used, but there’s also a lot of negative ways that it can be used, and people just have to be educated in terms of what it is, how it works, and what they’re looking at,” Myers said. “I think it’s something that people will have to get used to long-term because it’s here to stay.”