photo illustration (Ayla Dean)
photo illustration

Ayla Dean

Examining ethics

Altering views on AI art

February 21, 2023

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” This phrase is often used to express the difference in the value of different things to varying individuals; more commonly than not, art. Art is traditionally thought of as the physical expression of ideas, emotions and creativity. Yet with the emergence of artificial intelligence technology, new forms of artwork have become possible.

To preface this opinion, one must define what artificial intelligence actually is. In short, artificial intelligence uses computer systems to mimic the critical thinking and decision-making abilities of the human brain.

 AI art is art that is created entirely by algorithms. Although it is disavowed by some, from its potential to increase access to art, to its ability to open up new opportunities for collaborative artwork, there are various benefits that AI art can provide.

AI has proven time and time again that it has the potential to revolutionize the creative arts industry: improving productivity for artists and unifying art collections at a global scale. Recently, an AI medium called the AI Ark project has launched. 

This is a large-scale database aimed to archive and consolidate unique pieces of art from around the world. The program has provided insight into the future for many artists as well as allowed the creation of new art forms entirely.

AI art has led to the invention of a new form of dynamic art to interact with its users concurrently, creating a truly spirited art experience. Additionally, certain programs allow artists to input their personal work so that artists with their own styles can integrate them into this new frontier of art.

AI programs are not only used to create works of art, but they can be used to evaluate existing pieces. AI can analyze the elements in an artwork such as a famous painting’s brush strokes, layout or melody to aid in its evaluation. 

By using AI for creative works, artists can come up with innovative ideas with quicker turnaround times, giving them newfound opportunities to explore their creative boundaries. 

However, a majority of the debate on AI art does not stem from its practicality but rather its ethicality. The ethical implications of AI art using the work of others without their consent is a complex issue.

 On  one hand, AI art can be seen as a form of creative expression, and as such we should allow ourselves to draw inspiration from the work of others. On the other, it is important to respect the rights of the original artists and ensure that their work is not used without their permission.

Ethical considerations for AI art that uses the work of others without their consent vary depending on the context. When using AI art for commercial purposes, I say it is important to obtain permission from the original artist before using the work. This ensures that artists are compensated for their work and their rights are respected.

In spite of that, if you use AI Art for non-commercial purposes, it may be more acceptable to use someone else’s work without their consent for inspiration or to put it in a database. In this case, it is important to ensure that the original artist’s copyright is recognized and that their rights are respected.

AI art can be used to create unique and interactive experiences, allowing people to engage with art in ways they may not have been able to do before. Therefore, AI art is a powerful tool that can and should be utilized.

Leave a Comment

An artist stares at the colors and lines filling the screen. So similar to their own work, their own personal style, yet something they’ve never before seen, foreign. Something unaffected by human influence, untouched by an artist’s hand: this is AI art.

AI art has been gaining popularity in recent weeks. However, many are concerned over the ethicality of it all. 

Most see this rising form of art as harmless. It’s an easy way to replicate the styles of your favorite artists. It’s not like it hurts them or costs them. Right? It’s no different from using the artist as inspiration. Right?

What people are failing to understand, what they need to understand, is that this does hurt the artists. It does cost them. Maybe not physically, but damage does happen: figuratively, emotionally. The apps that have been creating this artificial art are stealing art from artists to use in their algorithms. Technically, it’s legal because they’re getting the art off of the web. Technically, they’re not breaking any copyright laws. Technically, there’s nothing wrong with this system. But ethically, there’s nothing right with this system either.

Artists’ names are being attached to work that isn’t theirs, just because their works were used as “inspiration”. Some pieces even show the mangled signatures of these artists, not only stealing their style but their name. Falsely crediting them for something they didn’t do, something they don’t want to be associated with.

This can be equated to someone changing the names in a book and calling themselves an author, using the same beats of a song and calling it their own. If professionals tried to do those things, there would be an uproar from creators and consumers alike. Why should AI art be any different? Why is this art form allowed more leniency than others? Why should this be allowed? Accepted even? 

However, this goes deeper. Beyond just the theft of a personal style, a personal identity, is the theft of a job, a living, a way to survive in this world. Technology has rapidly been taking over our lives. Workplaces are becoming more automated, opting for robots that are more efficient, reliable, and cost-effective than human labor. It was believed that the arts would be safe from this invasion, this purging of human life; however, this belief seems to be mistaken. 

Being an artist is not just a hobby for many, but a career. Just as robots are taking jobs away from factory workers, AI art is taking jobs away from artists. What’s the point in hiring an artist to make a poster when your computer can generate one in a fraction of the time? Why pay a person to create something when you can easily pay a program to recreate it until it’s just right?

From a consumer’s point of view, even a business’s point of view, AI art is definitely the way to go. What does it matter if a few artists lose the jobs they’ve so dutifully worked at all these years? Loyalty means nothing in the face of better profits. After all, business is business.

However, opting for the possibly cheaper, faster alternative does have consequences. The human touch is lost. The thing that gives art life, gives it a soul. It’s nothing more than a conglomeration of what has come before.

It’s hard to even call it art though. In and of itself, art is “the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination.” The key word being “human.” 

Beyond the programmers that created the algorithm though, no human has actually touched the art that is produced. No one has altered or enhanced it. The consumer takes what the program gives them and simply accepts it.

Yet at some point, we started accepting this as art. The question shifted from classification to ethicality. 

At this point though, it’s not going away. Companies will only continue to improve their algorithms, find more loopholes to escape any restrictions they come across.

Truly, the only question we should be asking ourselves is how artists can continue to survive in this technologically growing world. The answer? They can’t.

Leave a Comment

Tiger Times • Copyright 2024 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in

Comments (0)

Please leave us a comment. All comments must be approved before they will show online.
All Tiger Times Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *