Screenshot via This Fursona does not exist
Art generated by machine learning algorithms and AI systems, like DALL-E and Stable Diffusion, is getting really good. An AI-generated room won first place at the Colorado State Fair art competition this summer, and technologists are using artificial intelligence algorithms to develop classic works of art. The AI art scene has even his own folk legends and adult communities now.
But as the AI art game gets better and better, artist platforms are struggling to draw the line between “real” art, made by human hands, and the art of AI, made with a few text prompts, a data set, and an algorithm. Fur Affinity, a social art platform for the furry fandom, was one of the first places to see this AI art takeover. And now Fur Affinity is one of the first to ban AI art from its platform.
In a September 5 policy update first spotted by journalist Andy BaioFur Affinity has announced that artwork devoid of “artistic merit”, which is prohibited on the site, now includes “submissions created through the use of artificial intelligence (AI) or similar image generators “.
This means that accounts like the Hairy AI Porn Generator that produced endless images vaguely resembling furry genitals are no longer allowed on Fur Affinity.
The update states: “AI and machine learning applications (DALL-E, Craiyon) sample the work of other artists to create content. This generated content can reference hundreds or even thousands of works by other artists to create derivative images. Our goal is to support artists and their content. We do not believe it is in the best interests of our community to allow AI-generated content on the site.
The furry AI porn generator mentioned above fetched another furry fandom art site, e621, for the images to create the dataset that created the new images.
As Baio also noted, several social art gallery sites have taken a stand against this wave of AI-generated art by banning it outright: Inkblot, a new site that just launched in open beta, has a zero tolerance policy on AI artworks, and Newgrounds, a social animation and art sharing site that has been around since 1995, forbidden ai art from its Art Portal stream, specifically banning anything made with Midjourney, DALL-E, CrAIyon (formerly DALL-E Mini), and ArtBreeder.
Newgrounds makes interesting concessions to allow it elsewhere on the platform, such as on its own blog, but not on the art portal, where a flood of AI art could drown out other works. He also asks users to differentiate between individual elements of a room that are AI-generated, even if the entire work is not: “There are instances where some use of AI is acceptable, such as if you primarily feature your character art but use an AI-generated background,” the platform’s art guidelines state. “In these cases, please note any elements where the AI was used to make this clear to users and moderators.”
It makes sense that a platform that caters to artists would want to avoid allowing AI-powered bots to run rampant on their sites, burying everyone else. But as technology improves, people have always tried to define art, often using the method of creation as a way to differentiate valuable capital-A art from lesser forms. Now, with terms of service and policy statements, platforms have a way to literally write the rules and decide what is and isn’t allowed to be considered art.