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Review of facts. Do the posts show photographs of the Northern Lights over the Tagus River?

The day the skies over Portugal were seen with the northern lights, a natural phenomenon associated with the solar storm of rare intensity that affected the Earth, an image appeared on social networks and began to be shared as if it were a photograph taken in Lisbon. , with the 25 de Abril bridge and a colorful sky as a backdrop. “At this moment Boreal Author about Almada and Río Tajo,” reads one of the dozens of posts on social media that make the same claim.

The image in question was created by Jorge Phyttas-Raposo, a Portuguese graphic designer, who used artificial intelligence to create these and other images similar to the northern lights, choosing areas where this natural phenomenon would not be so visible: in Portugal there are recorded photographs in towns such as Chaves and Vila Pouca de Aguiar, in the district of Vila Real, Bragança, Viseu, Seia and Celorico da Beira (Guarda), Condeixa (Coimbra), Santarém or Portalegre.

Faced with hundreds of reactions, he himself wrote on Facebook (in more than one post) to demonstrate that it was not a photograph and even contradicted the testimonies of those who commented saying that they witnessed that moment in that place. “I don’t know if I’m happy that an image produced and identified as created with the help of an artificial intelligence algorithm “It has so much projection, or if I am saddened by the almost half a million people it supposedly reached, acquiring a degree of veracity that went beyond the simple need to interpret it,” Jorge Raposo wrote on his page.

“As someone who is actively immersed in various communities of image production using artificial intelligence algorithms, in its text-to-image variant, I am increasingly scared by the technical capacity of some of them that deceive and confuse the classic professionals of the creative categories. “If you already feel unable to determine and validate the distinction between an AI image, a digitally manipulated image and a classically produced image, most of us do not even dream of what happens that can fool our most basic emotions,” he added. . the author of the image.

Previously, Jorge Raposo had highlighted the use of the term “absolutely incredible” to justify that he had made it very clear that it was not a photograph, but rather an image made using artificial intelligence. And he also criticized social media users who not only did not check where the image came from but gave the example of “someone who claimed to have been in that place, where the image was supposedly photographed, and to have seen what appeared on it.” the photo”. ”.


It is false that the image in question is of a northern lights photographed in Almada or Lisbon. Although there were places in Portugal where this natural phenomenon could be captured last week, the author of the image himself has already clarified that it is a work created using artificial intelligence and that no attempt was ever made to prove that it was something real. . In this way, the actions that attribute this image of the 25 de Abril bridge with a colorful sky to an aurora borealis are based on a false premise.

Thus, according to the Observer classification system, this content is:


In Facebook’s rating system, this content is:

FAKE: Major content claims are factually inaccurate. Generally, this option corresponds to “false” or “mostly false” ratings on fact-checking websites.

NOTE: This content was curated by Observador as part of a fact-checking partnership with Facebook.

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Source: Observadora

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