More than 200 complaints made over ‘deepfake’ Queen’s speech

Ofcom spokesperson says watchdog has not decided whether to investigate yet

Deepfake Queen's speech

More than 200 complaints have been made over a “deepfake” version of the Queen’s speech aired on Christmas Day.

The alternate Christmas message, shown on Channel 4, saw a digitally-created version of Britain’s monarch speaking to the nation, in what had been billed as a warning about misinformation and fake news.

The speech included jokes about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's move to the US, as well as a nod to the scandal surrounding the Duke of York and his connection to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

An Ofcom spokeperson confirmed the media watchdog had received 214 complaints over the broadcast.

They added: "We are assessing these complaints against our broadcasting rules, but are yet to decide whether or not to investigate."

In the speech, the digital version of the Queen also performed a TikTok dance routine and revealed her penchant for "Netflix and Phil" with the Duke of Edinburgh.

Channel 4's alternative Christmas message aired opposite the BBC's broadcast of the Queen's official annual televised message to the nation.

The director of programmes at Channel 4 claimed the alternative message aimed to serve as a “powerful reminder” of misinformation. 

“Deepfake technology is the frightening new frontier in the battle between misinformation and truth,” Ian Katz said.

He added: “This year’s alternative Christmas address – seemingly delivered by one of the most familiar and trusted figures in the nation – is a powerful reminder that we can no longer trust our own eyes.”

Additional reporting by Press Association

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