Yomiuri Poll: 93% Say Originator Profile ‘Necessary’ to Counter AI Disinformation

Courtesy of Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry
An image from a video explaining Originator Profile that was presented at an OECD meeting on Thursday

Ninety three percent of people said Originator Profile (OP), a digital technology used to identify the source of online information, is necessary to tackle disinformation caused by generative artificial intelligence and other problems, according to a recent opinion poll conducted by The Yomiuri Shimbun.

In the mail-in survey conducted nationwide from March to April, 97% of the respondents either said it is “very important” (69%) or “somewhat important” (28%) to know the source of information. The results indicate the urgent need to establish a system to reliably obtain correct information.

OP is a technology that has been developed in Japan. It makes online data more trustworthy by embedding a third-party electronic identifier in articles and advertisements.

The government introduced OP as a technology to counter fake information by tracking how information is distributed and authenticating trustworthy information at an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development meeting in Paris earlier this month.

The Originator Profile Collaborative Innovation Partnership, formed by media and telecommunication companies, aims to put OP technology to use in 2025.

Asked if they check the source of information obtained through social media, 10% said they “always checked,” 31% “often checked,” 25% “rarely checked,” 8% “never checked” and 22% said that they did not use social media.

Of those who rarely or never checked the source of information they saw on social media, 97% said it is “important” to know the source of information to respond to disinformation. From the data, it can be seen that people find it difficult to identify the source of information though they understood the importance of doing so.

Of this same group, 94% said OP was necessary. Among those who always or often checked the source of information, the figure stood at 96%, while it was 92% among respondents who did not use social media. It shows the high expectations for OP among respondents regardless of the difference in their attitudes about using social media.

The Yomiuri Shimbun and NTT Corp. in April announced the “Joint Proposal on Shaping Generated AI,” which refers to OP as a measure to tackle problems caused by generative AI, saying, “these solutions [to tackle disinformation] cannot be maintained by laws alone, but rather, they also require measures such as Originator Profile, which is secured by technology.”