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Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

The Making of a Computer-Generated Influencer


The computer-generated character Miquela Sousa.

Miquela Sousa is exotic, attractive, and huge on Instagram; she is also entirely fake.

Credit: wsj.net

Miquela Sousa is a computer-generated (CG) character created by Brud, a Los Angeles-based startup, which aims to turn her and an expanding group of CG-based social media personalities into a cast of characters that can evolve with the times without aging.

Over the past decade, social media "influencers" have become online celebrities through daily postings about a range of topics. These influencers also have become highly sought-after brand ambassadors.

Miquela Sousa is a test of the power of social media celebrity; launched on Instagram in 2016, the character posts carefully composed images in a lifelike way, and did not identify herself as artificial until April, as part of a staged drama that played out over a series of posts.

Said Cyan Banister of Founders Fund, which has invested in Brud, “You can create the Kardashians without any of the inherent issues that come with being human.”

From The Wall Street Journal
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