Skip to main content
Colorado General AssemblyToggle Main Menu
Agency NameToggle Agency Menu

Candidate Election Deepfake Disclosures

Concerning the use of a deepfake in a communication related to a candidate for elective office, and, in connection therewith, requiring disclosure, providing for enforcement, and creating a private cause of action for candidates.
2024 Regular Session
Elections & Redistricting
Bill Summary

The bill creates a statutory scheme to regulate the use of deepfakes produced using generative artificial intelligence (AI) in communications about candidates for elective office. Sections 1 and 2 of the bill expand the existing authority of an administrative hearing officer under the "Fair Campaign Practices Act" (act) to impose civil penalties for distribution of a communication that includes a deepfake related to a candidate for elective office in violation of the provisions of section 3. Section 3 prohibits the distribution of a communication that includes an undisclosed deepfake with actual malice as to the deceptiveness or falsity of the communication related to a candidate for public office. Section 3 also defines "AI", "deepfake", and the requirements for a clear, conspicuous, and understandable disclosure statement regarding a deepfake that are necessary to avoid a violation of the new prohibition. In addition to meeting the specific statutory requirements for a clear and conspicuous disclosure statement, the disclosure statement must be included in the communication's metadata and, to the extent technically feasible, must be permanent or unable to be easily removed by subsequent users. The disclosure statement must also conform to any subsequent requirements established by the secretary of state through rulemaking. In a broadcast or online visual or audio communication, the disclosure statement must also satisfy all applicable requirements, if any, promulgated by the federal communications commission for size, duration, and placement.

Any person who believes there has been a violation of the statutory or regulatory requirements for disclosure of the use of a deepfake in a communication concerning a candidate for elective office may file a complaint with the office of the secretary of state (secretary). The secretary shall hear such complaints in accordance with the secretary's existing complaint and administrative hearing procedures under the act, and punish such complaints in accordance with sections 1 and 2.

Additionally, a candidate who is the subject of a communication that includes a deepfake and does not comply with the disclosure requirements may bring a civil action for injunction injunctive or other equitable relief or for general or special compensatory and punitive damages or both. Such a candidate may also seek reasonable attorney fees, filing fees, and costs of action, and any other just and appropriate relief necessary to enforce the prohibition created in section 3 and to remedy the harm caused by violation of the prohibition. In either type of action, The plaintiff-candidate must prove the defendant's actual malice as to the falsity or deceptiveness of the communication that includes the deepfake by clear and convincing evidence, consistent with established case law principles related to the right of free speech. Nothing in section 3 limits or impairs the right of the attorney general, or any person or entity, to pursue a legal action against a person in connection with a deepfake pursuant to any other law. And, nothing in section 3 exempts a person from criminal liability under existing law for a knowing or reckless communication concerning a candidate for elective office that includes a false statement through a deepfake.

(Note: Italicized words indicate new material added to the original summary; dashes through words indicate deletions from the original summary.)

(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details