Project Updates

Welcome to Perception Inception

We're incredibly excited to announce this project, which has been generously funded by the New Zealand Law Foundation's Information Law and Policy Project. We encourage you to check them out. 

This is a fascinating topic in emerging technologies that only seems to grow the more we consider it. Like any regulatory or policy project, the most important thing is to be clear about your legal subject. What exactly is it we're proposing to investigate? Three subjects that regularly come up are "fake news", Artificial Intelligence and cybersecurity: we will inevitably touch on these areas but they won't be our focus. 

Audio-visual information is everywhere. It's not easy to draw a regulatory boundary between deep fakes, movie special effects, instagram filters, and the advertising and creative industries. Any music you listen to has undergone some kind of audio processing in order to make it sound like it does.

It's doubtful that anybody anywhere should be able to appropriate anyone's visual or audio profile for any purpose, but we don't think the law lets them do that anyway. The question is how far this technology can go and how far the law and policy communities are ready to deal with it. 

How can we trust information that purports to represent what we would otherwise see with our own eyes and ears? This is our key question. We know there are already a wide range of technical and legal answers to this question and we're looking forward to discussing and disseminating our conclusions. 

Our task is to bring the information on this topic together in one place and communicate it to appropriate audiences. We want to do that sensibly and for that we will need input from the experts. There's nothing worse than research that's disconnected from the communities it is meant to serve. We want to check that our findings are proportionate and realistic. That reflects the strong industrial and economic focus driving development and use of these technologies. 

New Zealand is a world leader in these weightless exports and our legal system needs to keep it that way. Please do get in touch if you think you can help. 

Tom Barraclough