What’s the Ethical Use of AI-Generated Art?

Posted on November 29, 2022 by John Scalzi

John Sculsey

First: the aforementioned nonsense, Generated by Midjorney from the query “A camphor kaiju in a gingerbread town”.

Second, some ideas about AI-generated art that I had recently, which I posted on my personal Facebook account but will repost here to open up the discussion a bit. I wrote:

I have fun playing around with AI-generated art, and as someone who has many artist friends, I have concerns and worries about how their pre-existing art can be used for “training” in qualitatively and quantitatively different ways. Human learning and how that practice affects artists’ livelihoods. More specifically with regard to the latter, the question is how to do what I am AI to do with art has an impact on real live artists.

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Here it is easy to say “not easy Answers” ​​but I have some easy answers when it comes to how I can access and use AI-generated art in my personal and professional life. There it is:

1. I feel it’s okay to use AI-generated art for personal enjoyment and visual inspiration, or use my own art/photos or Creative Commons licensed art/photos where I can use them without any intent. Make money from art or related content (such as social media or blog posts).

2. In all other circumstances, and Especially When there is a commercial intent or application, or otherwise I hire an artist, I seek out artists and acquire art from them. Likewise, tell art directors/others that my work for them should be represented by art from artists, not AI generation (I think I don’t think so). enough For them to say this, not because of copyright issues surrounding AI-generated art, yet).

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As a small example: I’m having a ball generating holiday-related images with AI, but when it comes to holiday cards, I start art (or use my own photos) because that’s a time I’m hiring. Use the artist’s or my own photos. As a big example, in the near future I may need to collaborate with artists on projects, and for legal, practical and ethical reasons, there is no question that AI-generated art is not the way to go about it.

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The short version is: hire artists and make a deliberate, sustainable choice to hire artists (also, pay artists fairly for their work, not just because I can afford it, but that should be the basic assumption).

I think the AI ​​art generation is fun. I also think there needs to be an acknowledgment on my part that these images don’t come from nowhere. Sooner or later, they will come from artists. I don’t want to hurt artists I know or people I don’t know with my fun.


– J.S


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