AI “resurrection” cannot step outside the boundaries of law and morality

Figure 1 Wandering Earth 2 film, Tu Hengyu uses AI to revive his daughter Tuya Ya clip by Fan Guo
As artificial intelligence technology advances, people have discovered that they can use AI techniques to allow departed loved ones to communicate with us again through screens, giving the feeling that they never left. In the 2023 film “The Wandering Earth 2,” one scientist father, in order to compensate for the loss of his daughter in an accident, uploaded her consciousness and data to the cloud, creating an AI daughter capable of interactive communication. However, the use of AI virtual imaging technology is not new in recent years. In the British TV series Black Mirror 2 which aired 10 years ago, the female protagonist, after her husband’s accidental death, uploaded his data from social media onto a robot, creating a robot with a simulated personality of her husband. However, she ultimately realizes that the robot cannot truly “resurrect” her deceased husband. In anger, she shouts at the robot, “You’re just a ripple. You’re not a real person.” In the face of these movie plots, we will have questions at this time, the use of AI video synthesis of the face of the person is undoubtedly a violation of portrait rights, but the use of people who have passed away, does it mean that no one is injured at the legal level?
When the film scene into reality, AI “resurrection” technology caused controversy
In recent years, due to the continuous development of technology, AI imaging technology continues to mature, and the moral and ethical issues behind it, privacy and rights and other issues have again appeared in front of people.

Figure 2 “AI to revive Coco Lee, claiming that AI Coco Lee is a warm response to fans’ concerns” by Bai Lu news
In July 2023, the renowned singer Li Wen struggled with depression for several years, ultimately succumbing to it and choosing to end her life at home. Despite efforts from medical teams, she passed away. Six months later, in March 2024, Li Wen’s mother filed lawsuits against some netizens. These individuals, without consent from Li Wen’s immediate family, exploited her likeness and voice to create a series of “AI resurrection of Li Wen” videos, falsely claiming warmth while illegally profiting and promoting personal businesses through AI services (Xu,2024). Some of them are even more extreme, and some producers use the AI resurrection video of the dead star Qiao Renliang to say to their fans and relatives: “Hey, everyone, I’m alive again”, or “I’m not dead at all, I just want to be a normal person, I don’t want to be a star anymore.” These videos appeared and triggered a lot of public opinion. Strictly speaking, this is already a kind of rumour-mongering, which is a great harm to the deceased and his family. Coco Lee and Qiao are just one of a number of public figures who have been brought back to life by bloggers using AI technology to attract their followers’ attention. For AI resurrection technology, some people believe that this is a way to allow the life of loved ones to continue, but others believe that such digital life has many ethical and legal risks, and it is easy to let people fall into the virtual world, unable to return to reality. Lara (2024) indicates that AI is a potentially very benefcial, but risky new technology.

AI “resurrection” technology, a double-edged sword, should have a sense of boundary
Yang Xiao, of Beijing Huayi Law Firm, said the legal premise for “AI to resurrect” the dead should be that they should not cause mental pain to their close relatives. If it is the close relatives who request the use of AI technology to meet the emotional needs of relatives, it is understandable; However, if it is not permitted by the relatives and families, this practice of using AI technology to “revive” is a violation of the personality rights and interests of the deceased, such as portrait, reputation, privacy and so on. When new technologies are not fully covered by existing legislation, or may exploit legal loopholes, the best thing we can conduct a rigorous and reliable assessment of their risks and values to keep the development and implementation of the technology within the limits of the ethically permissible, of the socially acceptable (6,  2001, Floridi 2021, Véliz 2019, Blackman 2022, cfr. also the Montreal Declaration 2018; The Asilomar AI Principles 2017; AI Now institute; Center for Humane Technology). Therefore, we can see that the controversy of “AI resurrection “is mainly a conflict between the ethical laws of technology, the application of new technologies requires legal constraints, and the process of social adaptation.

Legal updates should keep pace with the development of high technology

When I searched for AI “resurrecting” relatives on e-commerce platforms, as well as Internet platforms such as Twitter, I found that many merchants can provide this service, and the cheapest one only needs a single digit price. These technologies allow the deceased to simply make the photo move, while real-time intelligent communication is more expensive. From the point of view of the number of consumption, it can be determined that there are a large number of users behind the actual needs.
Therefore, this upgrading of demand not only requires a higher level of technical service supply, but also a new test of social law. Ethics have always been the object of legal protection in China, so the application of AI resurrection technology cannot step outside the boundaries of the law. Unfortunately, because the current China’s regulations on artificial intelligence are still dominated by traditional laws. It is still necessary for various departments to coordinate and strengthen cooperation, so that law and science and technology can develop together.
Artificial intelligence technology is developing rapidly, and in the face of potential security threats brought by these technologies, we must make good predictions and develop adequate defense measures to mitigate these threats (Brundage, 2018).

Malicious use of AI
It is worth noting that the use of AI audio and video restoration technology is not only used in the “resurrection” of dead people, but also to steal the identity of living people. For example, the use of AI audio and video fraud incidents have increased significantly in recent years. Not long ago, the staff of the Hong Kong branch of a multinational company was invited to participate in a ‘multi-person video conference’ initiated by the chief financial officer of the headquarters, and transferred 200 million yuan in accordance with the requirements, but in fact, in addition to the victim, other “participants” are scam personnel after “AI face change”(Yuan,2024). The Federal Trade Commission issued a consumer alert urging people to be vigilant for calls using voice clones generated by artificial intelligence, one of the latest techniques used by criminals hoping to swindle people out of money (Joe,2023). Dr Diep N Nguyen, Associate Professor with the School of Electrical and Data Engineering at the University of Technology Sydney, said AI models can recreate relatively short speech fragments and string fragments into coherent sentences.

Figure 3 AI models can recreate a ‘reasonably high-quality voice clone’ from a relatively short voice clip.
He added that according to some AI algorithms, they are up to 99 percent similar to real humans, making it difficult for the average person to identify the 1 percent. In Canada, there have been eight elderly people who were cheated of millions of dollars because AI synthesized videos of their relatives and family members. In China, a Ms. Wang, because of the AI synthetic video for her daughter, scammers said her daughter was kidnapped and extorted 400,000 yuan from Ms. Wang. In my opinion, ordinary people are extremely vulnerable to AI synthetic audio, especially the elderly, who may be somewhat disconnected from society and thus exploited by bad actors for emotional and other purposes.
Generally, AI “resurrection” technology is like a Pandora’s box that has been opened, so how will we regulate and manage AI “resurrection” technology? In the face of criminals using such technology, how will we prevent it?
Countermeasures and practical application
AI” resurrection “should not be used for the purpose of commercial scenarios such as sales and drainage, and should be limited to the use of relatives. Moreover, the producer or publisher should make a “resurrection” of the relatives as a reminder of the virtual product, never avoiding the relatives confusing the virtual and the reality and indulging in it. Taking the Tiktok platform as an example, a prompt such as “Content suspected to be generated by AI, please carefully identify” will appear under the AI video. In my opinion, this can very well help all people to understand and distinguish between reality and virtual, so that these people who do not know what AI is can simply know that the content in this video is not real.

Figure 4 The AI warning in the Douyin video tells people that this is an AI synthesized video
In China, specific requirements and rules have been set for the implementation of related technologies, called the Interim Measures for the Management of Generative Artificial Intelligence Services, but according to Chu, He said the current actual situation, the implementation of this regulation is far from enough. How to define the responsibilities between different entities and how to improve the compliance obligations of the platform all require specific answers in the process of the implementation of regulations (Xiao & Wang, 2024). Brundage (2018) indicated that Policymakers should work closely with the technology sector to enable researchers to investigate, prevent, and mitigate potential risks to prevent the malicious use of AI.
In October 2022, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released the Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights: Making Automated Systems Work for the American People, which aims to support the construction, deployment, and governance of automated systems and protect the democratic rights of American citizens.While the AI Bill of Rights Blueprint is not binding, it does not constitute U.S. government policy. But the blueprint provides a solid guide on how to build a society that protects all people from the aforementioned threats, and how to use technology to reinforce the highest values (Wang&Chen,2023).
In this year, according to Reuters on January 2, If 2023 was the year AI changed everything, 2024 May be seen as the year US copyright law changed AI (Black, 2024).

After investigation and research, it is found that AI technology and the Internet are the products of scientific and technological innovation, and the technology itself is a double-edged sword, which cannot be separated from the legal constraints. But sometimes, as a backstop for maintaining social stability, the law inevitably lags behind. Therefore, countries have not regulated AI technology in recent years by means of special legislation. At the same time, while we abide by the law, the users of AI technology should also abide by ethics, respect the rights of others, and do the good of society. As the recipients of AI technology, we also have to understand that AI “resurrection” is only the imagination of the living, to treat the departure of relatives correctly and rationally, in the real number is not a reality, should not be overly addicted to the virtual, but should pay attention to the present, down to earth step by step.


Brundage, M., Avin, S., Clark, J., Toner, H., Eckersley, P., Garfinkel, B., . . . Amodei, D. (2018). The malicious use of artificial intelligence: Forecasting, prevention, and mitigation.

Chen Su., Yanyan liu.(2024).Resurrecting a star with AI? Beware of infringement.

Joe Hernandez. (2023).That panicky call from a relative? It could be a thief using a voice clone, FTC warns.

Lara, Francisco., & Deckers, Jan. (2024). Ethics of Artificial Intelligence. (1st ed.). Springer International Publishing AG.

Montréal Design Declaration: Issued at the 2017 Montréal World Design Summit. (2018). Design Issues, 34(2), 77–82.

Tianhe Yuan.,Jin Guo.(2024).AI resurrection cannot step outside the boundaries of the law.

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