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Communications of the Association for Information Systems

Abstract

We are witnessing a growing concern around the impact of hyper-realistic synthetic media and its dissemination in what is widely known as "deepfakes." However, the phenomenon's relative newness and the fragmented nature of existing research on it across several disciplines leave a lot to be desired. In addition, empirical research is scarce, and deepfake literature is moving forward in a variety of directions without a strong theoretical foundation. The fragmented nature of extant literature on the phenomenon calls for consolidation in order to produce a thorough and current summary of deepfake research to date and map its present intellectual boundaries. We offer an integrative overview of the existing corpus of research on deepfakes in this paper, noting the wide range of domains, samples, and approaches used. We point out various gaps in deepfake narratives, including definitional concerns, a lack of comprehensive demographic and cross-geographic coverage, a lack of theoretical underpinning, thematic tensions, and imbalances in the extant literature on deepfakes. In the last section of the paper, we propose future research directions, which include a set of themes and research questions and a theoretical framework to guide future research on the topic.

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