NO: This video of President Joe Biden giving a speech on the Fourth of July is not authentic. YES: It was doctored to reduce the speed of the footage, slowing Biden’s speech and making it his words sound slurred.
NewsLit takeaway: Making simple manipulations to video can be an extremely effective way to spread disinformation, especially when the end result connects with existing partisan or ideological narratives and ideas. In this case, a “time-stretching algorithm” was used to slow down the speed of the audio without dropping the pitch of Biden’s voice (the way merely changing the playback speed might). As PolitiFact noted in its fact check, the doctored video was about 20% longer than the authentic video of the speech. PolitiFact also underscored the nature of many online comments the video elicited, including those drawing Biden’s mental fitness into question and speculating that his speech was slurred due to a medication. This example is reminiscent of a 2019 video of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that was slowed to push the baseless claim that she was inebriated.