Pornographic Skyrim mods called out over consent issues
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Featured Image Credit: Bethesda/MariaKH (modder)
Thanks to the wonderful modding community, our favourite video games can be revitalised with unofficial DLC, a graphical overhaul or even improved performance and more.
This brings us to today’s topic, which I suppose in some ways leans into the graphical and performance category, but not of the variety that perhaps many of us would hope. We are talking about pornographic Skyrim mods that allow lustful gamers to experience Bethesda’s fantasy RPG in a more fruitful way.
At this point, I’d usually say something like ‘I never thought I’d be writing a story related to pornographic mods’, but with the internet, pretty much nothing surprises me, anyone.
If you’re a fan of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, in particular on PC, then the chances are that you’re aware that there are many awesome mods for the game. In fact, there’s perhaps no game that has benefited more from mods, than Skyrim. However, it’s not all about ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage or even Thomas the Tank.
As reported by GamesRadar, voice actors have called out AI technology has been imitating their voices to be used in pornographic Skyrim mods, without their consent and even if consent was offered, it seems this is something they’d want to stay well clear of.
Twitter user and self-proclaimed member of the Skyrim modding community, @Robbie92_ shared their support for the voice actors and disdain for the rise in pornographic content.
With the rise of AI voice cloning, voice actors are being abused by the modding communities. As a member of the Skyrim modding scene, I am deeply concerned at the practice of using AI voice cloning to create and distribute non-consensual deepfake pornographic content. pic.twitter.com/ySUFqrtjH0— Robbie (@Robbie92_) July 1, 2023
Naturally, voice actors that worked on Skyrim have been sharing their support for the tweet that is now fast approaching 600,000 views. “Thank you, Robbie. This is really disturbing. I'll look into it,” said Elisa Gabrielli, the voice of Maven Black-Briar in Skyrim.
“If you find my voice in one of these situations, please let me know so I can ask that it be taken down,” exclaimed Ben Diskin. “I do not consent to my biometric data being used for these purposes.”
“If you find my voice in one of these mods, please let me know so I can request that it be taken down,” retweeted Abbey Veffer, who has also provided voices for The Elder Scrolls. I do not, and never will, consent to my voice being used for AI synthesis, cloning, deepfakes, etc. This is NOT okay.”
Sadly trying to maintain control of unconsenting AI content is a near-impossible task. Nexusmods, which is the go-to place for PC mods said in a statement from April 2023 that the use of “ AI-generated mod content is not against our rules.”
We’re not sure how things can be made better for the actors, artists and content creators that are impacted by AI exploitation, but we at least hope things will one day improve for the better in the near future.