This Week in PR Ethics (4/6/23): Let’s turn it up to 12! Deepfakes, Taylor Swift and using AI to fake diversity

Most of the most intriguing communication and public relations ethics issues this week* dealt with AI ethics.


  • Taylor Swift and Deepfakes – The Atlantic had a very interesting feature on the rise of celebrity audio deepfakes. In this case, it was Swifties sharing Taylor Swift audio deepfakes on Tik Tok. The service is free and shows the accelerating blurring of fiction and reality.


  • Turn it Up to 12 – With a nod to Spinal Tap, PR Week expands on the Taylor Swift issue and highlights how AI deepfakes may be the most significant challenge communicators face from a crisis comms point of view and why you need to start preparing today.


  • Using AI to fake diversity – Ad Age had a great story on the backlash against Levi’s for using AI models to increase the diversity of the images of people wearing its clothing. While being more diverse is a very good thing, many point out that the brand is doing it at the expense of hiring diverse models.


  • UNESCO calls for global AI ethics framework – Globally, last week, UNESCO called on countries to fully implement its Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence immediately. This global normative framework was adopted unanimously by the 193 Member States of the Organization.


*If you want to talk ethics and the political issues of the week, there are many other places you can go.

Mark McClennan, APR, Fellow PRSA
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Mark W. McClennan, APR, Fellow PRSA, is the general manager of C+C's Boston office. C+C is a communications agency all about the good and purpose-driven brands. He has more than 20 years of tech and fintech agency experience, served as the 2016 National Chair of PRSA, drove the creation of the PRSA Ethics App and is the host of


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