The current trend of Lensa, Midjourney, etc is rent seeking ghoulish behavior that seeks to destabilize artistic labor even more than it already is.
This is NFT shit all over again and theres needs to be a zero tolerance of it. This is automated theft and exploitation to be stopped.
This is unnecessarily reactionary and an unneeded burden on site staff.
why do you think that banning images based on revenge porn, executions, and stolen work is unnecessarily reactionary? many other websites such as getty images and inkblot have already placed a ban on AI. this is not an unprecedented request.
To be clear: I am not calling any person who has messed around with AI art or done the memes bad person. I think Midjourney and companies like them are the ghouls here. I see the dynamic as the similar to the way that facebook users are not resonpisble for how their data is used to malicious ends, but facebook is a bad company (and in my opinion should be broken up).
This suggestion was based on Getty images recent ban (though them being a storefront does make them have different priorities and liabilities than cohost). But there may be reason not to do a full ban such as edge cases which blur the lines. There may also be half measures, like requiring people to credit their ai art as such rather than just the honor system, although this is has its own issues.
That being said, I will still say that the ethical implications of the technology are different from the implications of these companies owning and selling this technology. They are one who seek to profit and will profit more than any one user. And people using it as a toy are (not for the most part) writing their own code to make ai art. They are going to these companies they are making these companies more valuable by using there tech.
I understand that these are issues way beyond cohost or any one website. But I genuinely feel that for years the public has been taught to devalue all art created online. (And to be clear I don't think I'm above this kind of thinking or behavior myself). In my opinion, this is just another form of thinking of artistic labor as magical and work free. Just content for the content pipe. I can not see companies like Lensa as anything other than bad actors. Which is why I'm very passionate about taking a strong stance against it.
I hope that if you found my word too incendiary you take the time to read this even if you still don't agree, or think of it as an overreach.
Banning the entire topic is a bit heavy, articles/discussions and conversation surrounding the topic, absolutely, should be allowed.
It’s a very contentious issue for artists and they don’t feel safe with their work hosted alongside generated images which they know are likely scraped from sites without consent.
Asking for civility over an issue where the first civil step would be to ask artists if they wanted to contribute is kind of a big ask, especially as everyday after I see fellow artists getting their works spitefully taken and abused when they dare to ask, after the theft already occured, for some understanding and empathy on the issue.
Ban AI images? Artists will sing to the high heavens and happily post without dreadding as much about cohost brushing shoulders with prompters who might feel bold enough to just scrape the art tag. (Do note, banning ai prompters won't really prevent this from happening, it's more a principled stance for the staff to take to mildly comfort artists, who will have to deal with this everywhere else until legislation gets involved).
Don't ban it? Artists will feel like the owners are taking the side of the failed-nft-grifters which is an unfair reach, but for artists who deal with being undervaluved enough to get their freely posted work stolen, and only valued when someone else profits off their skills and labour, it's tiring and artists will pack their stuff and hike it. (Again this wouldn't save them from getting their work stolen but some artists will just up and disappear and never share their work again, or draw again.)
Personally, give me the ability to block an account and their subsequent pages, after logged-in posts gets enabled, I'd feel more comfortable posting.
I think the conflation of sampling and photo bashing are inappropriate comparisons. I will say the use of copyright free music is not cause anyone is doing anything right or wrong, but big music labels are extremely litigious. A lot of artist who post online are perpetual freelancers and so there work is something they have to protect on there own which is nearly impossible as an individual. With sampling in music like hip hop there are long established splits and crediting with samples. And sampling still not with out controversy. Just this year Beyonce ran into trouble with singer Krelis who was sampled without permission. It was called "theft" by the artist. This resulted in the song being taken down from streaming and stores. Now that's an example from the very top of the music industry but I can't imagine there aren't be controversy like between independent or unsigned artist. People tend to care less about a smaller creator sampling older works or bigger star at least to my understanding, and crediting is still considered good form. That sense of what is isn't fair use isn't fair use is always going to be blurry but that doesn't mean people don't have a right to defend ownership of their work.
Photo bashing has had similar controversy over the year but you only have to look at art station that last few days to see many concept artist who have use photo bashing protesting ai art. Even if you don't think there's a difference they clearly think there is one.
Lastly, I'm not really sure what critical engagement means in this context. Does it mean: I like this technology but see how it can be used to abuse people, so I am using public domain or legally licensed data sets? If so: Great! Or does it mean: I use the tools from companies that are know to steal from artists but I have discusses with my community about how that bad? If it is the second then I don't think critical engagement means anything. Because if your discussion on ethics does lead to any kind of action or difference in behavior, then those discussion may as well have happened in a dream. I do hope that is the former and no the latter and sound like people do make there own tools in current community.
Surely we could at least agree that use of data sets that are know to have stolen work are off limits? Or LAION is specially banned? That to me that is pretty clear distinction. Yes there's going to bad actors and people who are lying but the current laise faire attitude don't prevent this from happening. There have been harassment campaigns on other sites for years, about plagiarism in art between humans. Cohost is young and small so that hasn't happened yet . Yet is opporitive word here. Just because things are chill now doesn't mean there won't be issues in future. Harassment in my experience is triggered more by people emotions (rational or not) and people sense of what's right and wrong, rather than black and white rules. Not having clear TOS or any kind of process for reporting, will not prevent this from happening it will just make it more chaotic when it does happen.
I'm not interested in a website that bans an entire medium of artistic expression in its infancy. I trust that Cohost staff can ban bad actors and remove instances of copyright infringement and other TOS violations without a blanket ban on generative art. So far, I have been impressed by Cohost's thoughtful and principled approach to their TOS and community guidelines, and I hope they will continue approaching hot-button issues by continuing to improve users' abilities to control their own experiences, rather than amending site policy in reaction to each new controversy.