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  • Yvonne McDermott Rees

Launching the TRUE project

Updated: Aug 8, 2022

Thanks to a £1.3 million grant from UKRI, TRUE will investigate the impact of the rise in deepfakes on lay and professional fact-finders' trust in user-generated evidence.

User-generated evidence - such as videos recorded by witnesses on their mobile phones - plays an important role in legal trials worldwide. This kind of evidence has transformed our ways of knowing about mass human rights violations and holding perpetrators to account.

Yet, at the same time, the public is increasingly confronted with examples of ‘deepfakes’ – extremely realistic images, videos, or audio recordings created using machine learning technology – which are only likely to become more advanced and difficult to detect as the technology progresses.

Through an innovative methodology combining legal analysis of trials with mass online experiments and mock jury trials, TRUE (TRust in User-generated Evidence), will develop the first systematic account of trust in user-generated evidence, in the specific context of its use in human rights accountability processes.


TRUE was originally selected for funding by the European Research Council (ERC) through a prestigious Starting Grant. As the United Kingdom did not finalise its association to the Horizon Europe funding scheme, TRUE is funded under the UKRI's generous Frontier Research guarantee scheme [grant no.: EP/X016021/1]. We are very grateful to UKRI for supporting this project.

TRUE will run from 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2027, enabling the research team to track the impact of advances in technology over time.



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