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Electoral commission warns candidates and platforms against pushing misinformation using AI

Candidates should not “knowingly produce or disseminate deceptive AI content”, the Commission said.

IRELAND’S ELECTORAL COMMISSION has warned candidates and online platforms about the use of AI images, videos and audio in the upcoming local, EU and Limerick mayoral elections in June.

It said that social media platforms and search engines should “provide tools to mitigate risks to electoral processes related to deceptive AI election content”.

An Coimisiún Toghcháin also said such content should be “clearly labeled or otherwise made distinguishable through prominent marking”.

Candidates should not “knowingly produce or disseminate deceptive AI content with the potential to mislead voters or undermine the integrity of  the electoral events”, the Commission said. 

The Framework on Online Electoral Process Information, Political Advertising and Deceptive AI Content, which has been published today, also has advice for platforms and candidates on upholding the integrity of the elections more generally. 

An Coimisiún Toghcháin said it has taken this initiative “recognising that today’s online landscape is markedly different from that of the 2019 European and Local Elections”.

The list of advice is a voluntary framework and is intended to complement existing EU laws, the Commission said. 

It said the framework comes in response to “concerns and evidence” from international bodies and actors like the OECD, International IDEA and the European Digital Media Observatory.

“In preparing the Framework consideration has been given to the importance of ensuring a reasonable balance between fundamental rights such as the protection of freedom of expression and opinions, and the right to participate in public affairs and the need to protect democracy and electoral integrity,” the Commission said. 

For reliable information about elections, check out The Journal’s new Knowledge Bank, where you’ll find answers to questions like “Can foreign nationals vote in Irish elections?” and “What is an MEP and what do they do?”. 

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