The family of Formula One star Michael Schumacher is planning to take legal action against a German weekly magazine after it published an “interview” with the racer that was generated using artificial intelligence.
A spokesperson for the Schumacher family pointed to published reports of legal action, according to Reuters.
Family spokesperson Sabine Kehm confirmed to The Associated Press by email on Thursday that legal action is being planned over a “fake artificial intelligence interview by German outlet Die Aktuelle.”
Schumacher has not been seen in public since suffering a near-fatal brain injury in a skiing accident on a French Alps vacation in December 2013.
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Since then, the family has guarded the privacy of the seven-time F1 champion.
Schumacher continues to be cared for privately at a family home in Switzerland.
Little information has been given about his condition and access to those closest to Schumacher has been limited.
His son Mick is the Mercedes reserve driver, losing his seat at Haas at the end of last season.
Schumacher shares the record for most F1 titles with British driver Lewis Hamilton, who drives for Mercedes. Schumacher retired from F1 in 2012 after three seasons with Mercedes and was replaced on the team by Hamilton.
The celebrity tabloid magazine, Die Aktuelle, ran a cover story with a picture of a smiling Schumacher.
The headline read: “Michael Schumacher, the first interview,” and a strapline said the AI interview “sounded deceptively real.”
“No meagre, nebulous half-sentences from friends. But answers from him! By Michael Schumacher, 54!” Die Aktuelle said.
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Inside, only after the interview, it said the quotes had been produced by the AI technology.
ESPN noted that the magazine has a history with the family, winning a previous legal case after saying a “new love” had entered wife Corinna Schumacher’s life. The article was about the couple’s daughter, Gina.
Corinna Schumacher has spoken about her husband’s condition in a 2021 Netflix documentary titled “Schumacher.”
“We live together at home. We do therapy. We do everything we can to make Michael better and to make sure he’s comfortable, and to simply make him feel our family, our bond,” she said.
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“We’re trying to carry on as a family, the way Michael liked it and still does. And we are getting on with our lives,” Schumacher continued.
“‘Private is private’, as he always said. It’s very important to me that he can continue to enjoy his private life as much as possible. Michael always protected us, and now we are protecting Michael,” she noted.
Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.