Steak-umm, the frozen beef sheets brand known for keeping it 100% Real and an unlikely advocate against misinformation, is once again applying its truth telling powers in the name of safeguarding the social fabric. This time they’ve turned their attention to the issue of deep fake and AI technologies used to gaslight, defraud, and sow confusion among everyday people.
The new campaign, called “DeepSteaks” and created in partnership with ad agency Tombras, was devised around fake focus groups in which real vegans were asked personal questions about their vegan lifestyle. They were then offered a new vegan cheesesteak sandwich to sample, and they were filmed eating.
At the same time, a production team – led by Borat 2 director Jason Woliner – was behind the scenes creating deepfakes (aka “DeepSteaks”) of each participant in real-time. When participants were shown videos of themselves shortly after, they were shocked at what they saw and heard – they had seemingly been turned into meat lovers in mere minutes.
The goal of the campaign is to educate the public about the potential risks and harmful effects of deepfakes – and that anyone can fall victim to this dangerous technology, not just politicians and celebrities. It poses the question: If a deepfake can make a vegan say they love meat, imagine what they could get you to say?
The video ends by inviting viewers to visit DeepSteaks.ai to sign a petition for the DEEP FAKES Accountability Act, and learn how to spot, report, and safely engage with deepfake technology.
Steak-umm has built a cult-like following in its fight against misinformation. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Steak-umm was hailed as a “misinformation watchdog,” tweeting to followers to question news sources and ensure they are getting accurate information. Last year they launched the Meataversity of Steak-umm ahead of the midterm elections, with the goal of bringing its fight against misinformation and to the newest corner of the web, the metaverse.
The brand has been following deepfakes for years, and currently there are measures being considered by both the FEC and Congress that seek to protect individuals nationwide from being misrepresented by deepfake technology. In the past month no less than Tom Hanks, MrBeast, and Gayle King have all come out with announcements that ads using their likeness were not real endorsements – they were deepfakes.
“Every American needs to be aware of the dangers of deepfake technology,” said Tombras president Dooley Tombras. “This is a problem that goes beyond celebrities and world leaders, and Steak-umm, the most unexpected champion of media literacy, has demonstrated that in this shocking film. Our goal is to not only educate the public, but show just how fast a deepfake can be created and spread.”