Legal Issue Opinions

AI:  You can’t believe, well… Anything!

by Yana A. St. Clair, Esq.

Legal Issue

We’ve all heard the expression: You can’t believe everything you hear.  Or for that matter: You can’t believe everything you read.  And in the legal world, a false claim on both has punitive repercussions. 

In the sense that speaking untruthfully about someone and damaging their reputation in the process is called slander, and the victim of said ill language can sue you in a court of law.  On the other hand, writing or publishing something untruthful and harmful about an individual is called libel, and is equally punishable by law.  

Well, friends, we have finally come to a point where it goes way beyond that…

What can you believe?? 

It used to be people would say, I’ll only believe it if I’ve seen it with my own eyes.  Well, not so much anymore.  In a surprisingly short amount of time, we have officially transitioned into a society where you can’t believe ANYTHING you see.  At all!!  I just saw a post online of a little girl who had built a ten feet tall snow cat, whiskers and ear hairs and all, and while half of the comments were people talking about how AI generated it, the other half, were folks in amazement at the little girl’s skill and dedication to her project.     

I keep telling myself that this will be my last article on AI, but it can’t be, because it just won’t go away, and it’s here to stay.  Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, seems to be obsessed with Chat GPT, and all the while, if you’ve seen all those memes, John Connor from the Terminator movies is shaking his head, wondering what in the world we’re doing becoming friends with AI, when anyone that has watched an apocalyptic Sci-Fi movie, knows the robots end up killing us all at the end.  But jokes and dramatics aside, there is a lot to be concerned about, that does not involve your toaster killing you in your sleep. 

And here is one of the main concerns, or at least from my professionally biased, attorney point of view.  What do we do about crime scene photos? Videos from the incident? Was that really the suspect, or did AI generate him there? Did the rape even take place, or was it just an AI skit? I recently saw a video of Tom Cruise speaking fluent Japanese for ten minutes in a restaurant and guess what, it wasn’t him. 

So, who and what is real, and how out of control is this going to get? And who do we sue, and who is responsible?  And again, did that crime even take place?

But let’s take it out of the legal world for a second and make it more real world and personal.  So, your wife has been suspecting that you’re having an affair.  You stupidly mention this to a resourceful ill-willing friend.  Now there’s an AI generated video of you engaging in beyond questionable conduct with a co-worker, and you’re being bribed for a good $20,000.  Sure, it’s not true, but is she going to buy it if she sees that video? And let’s just think about what that would do to politicians.  But at the same time, it might exonerate many, if enough people start realizing that not everything, or anything, is true.  

I was recently talking to a friend about the possibility of extra-terrestrial life on Earth, and she told me that if she saw a little green man step out of a flying saucer, she would assume it was fake and someone AI generated, and you know what, I don’t blame her.  

And in closing, while I surely can’t promise that this will be my last article on AI, here are some parting words.  Think about it.  I know it’s an easy companion for your papers, but many of them have been proven to be plagiarized.  And at the end of the day when you’re thinking that anything AI is sooo cool, ask yourself, if you see that video of your wife getting a little too cozy with your tennis partner, who would you believe, the loving mother of your children, or a computer…?

Disclosure: Please note that none of the information contained within the above column is to be considered legal advice.


Yana is an American attorney licensed to practice in all State and Federal courts of California.  Yana holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science specializing in International Relations from UCLA, the Degree of Juris Doctor from Loyola Law School, and a Master of Business Administration Degree from Ashford University.  Since the beginning of her undergraduate studies, Yana has been involved in various aspects of the field of Electrical Engineering, where she employs her business and legal knowledge to consulting and advising businesses and individuals on relevant topics of concern. Yana also serves as Editor for PACWorld magazine, having been with the publication since its inception.  As an attorney, Yana specializes in criminal defense, where she devotes her talents and expertise to fighting for her clients’ rights and freedom.