Tennessee attorney general, other AGs urge Congress to study, rein in artificial intelligence-generated child porn

Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti / Contributed Photo by Tennessee Supreme Court
Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti / Contributed Photo by Tennessee Supreme Court

NASHVILLE — Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti says he has joined a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general in all 50 states to urge Congress study how artificial intelligence can and is being used to exploit children through child sexual abuse material and also propose legislative remedies.

"We should do all we can to research and understand AI's impact, deter exploitation and protect our children from any harmful effects of this technology," Skrmetti said in a release Tuesday. "We were not vigilant enough during the rise of social media and a generation of kids is paying the price. We cannot afford to make the same mistake again."

The letter, also signed by Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr, was sent Tuesday to U.S. House and Senate leaders. The state officials warn AI tools can rapidly and easily create "deepfakes" by studying real photographs of abused children to generate new images showing those children in sexual positions.

Other examples cited include overlaying the face of one person on the body of another and overlaying photographs of otherwise unvictimized children on the internet with photographs of abused children to create new child sexual abuse material involving previously unharmed children.

Skrmetti and other coalition members want Congress to form a commission to study specifically how AI can be used to exploit children and also act to deter and address child exploitation, such as by expanding existing restrictions on child sexual abuse material to explicitly cover AI-generated child sexual abuse material.

Others signing the letter include Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall and New York Attorney General Letitia James. Also signing the letter were attorneys general from the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and the Northern Mariana Islands

Contact Andy Sher at asher@timesfreepress.com or 615-285-9480.