ArtStation Anti-AI Protest "no to ai generated images" graphic.

ArtStation Anti-AI Protest

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Updated Dec 16, 2022 at 05:55PM EST by Zach.

Added Dec 16, 2022 at 03:21PM EST by Philipp.

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ArtStation Anti-AI Protest is a community protest against AI art on the art portfolio website ArtStation, owned by Epic Games, that started in mid-December 2022. The protest included artists posting the image with the word "AI" crossed out, reading, "No to AI Generated Images," and other versions of it. The protest became a viral topic of discussion in the artist community, with ArtStation responding with changes to their content policy, which were largely deemed insufficient.


On December 9th, 2022, artist Dan Eder tweeted[1] about AI art being featured on the main page of the art portfolio website ArtStation, writing, "putting something that was generated using a prompt alongside artwork that took hundreds of hours and years of experience to make is beyond disrespectful." The tweet gained over 1,800 retweets and 14,600 likes in one week.

On December 12th, 2022, artist Imogene Chayes posted[2] an image with the word "AI" crossed out, reading "No to AI Generated Images," to her ArtStation account, gaining nearly 200 likes in four days (shown below). The image was designed by artist Alexander Nanitchkov.[3][4]


On December 13th, artist Nicholas Kole posted the image on his ArtStation[5] account, calling for the website to make a stand against AI with an official policy, and also tweeting about it on Twitter.[6] The post gained over 4,200 likes in three days.

Nicholas Kole @FromHappyRock Heck with it, borrowing the idea from Imogene Chayes and posting this until @ArtStationHQ pays attention and takes a stand Portfolio A Prints About NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Nicholas Kole Illustrator & Concept Artist www.nicholasko Vancouver, BC, Canada Likes (1,030) Following (382) Followe Manage portfolio > Portfolio display options 2:49 PM Dec 13, 2022 A! Al "art" is trash Share 9 Comments Di Marcio Ferreira 30 Cha-C Tweet 9 Comments Share xquid It's horrible Al has been used to the world. And too many people are downplaying this like it's no big deal rm going to leave here an article from the 3d scan store that talks about how tep http://www.canstorne blog/We ws/4 ways to protect your artwork from-Al

On December 13th, 2022, as the protest took on, the image comprised the most posts on ArtStation's trending page. On that day, artist Logan Preshaw tweeted[7] a screenshot of the trending page, with the post gaining over 9,700 retweets and 99,500 likes (screenshot and tweet shown below, left and right).

ARTSTATION PRO اها All Channels Community Explore ✓ Learn The Art of WoW Dragonflight Trending Latest Following NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES IMMORTAI Shop A A A Jobs NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Illustration NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Q Search Science Fiction NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Environmental Concept Art & Design NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES All Titanic Tarrasque Florent Desailly PRO Unreal Engine NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES 2D 3D Fantasy Concept Art NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Character Design WORLD WARCRAFT DRAGONFLIGHT AAAAAAAAAAA! Character Modeling NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Game Art 828 NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Gr A A A NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Mecha All Media ✓ : NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES A A A A A A A RTSTATION Ladies, gentlemen and everything in between. I present to you: Hope. All Channels unity Logan Preshaw @wickedinsignia Explore Learn Trending ABLO MORTAL The Art of Wow Dragonflight Latest Shop Following H Jobs Illustration AU AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Q Search Science Fiction AD Environmental Concept Art & Design 8:53 PM Dec 13, 2022 All NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Unreal Engine 3D Fantasy Concept Art NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES Character Design Character Modeling Game Art A A NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES A A A A A A WORLD WARCRAFT DRAGONFLIGHT NO TO AI GENERATED IN A A A A A A NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES ... DE Mecha All Me NO TO AI GENERATED IN A

More unique versions of the protest image were posted[8][9] by artists (examples shown below).



On December 14th, 2022, ArtStation posted a FAQ in which the company addressed the concerns,[10] replacing it with a reworded version on December 16th.[11]

In the FAQ, ArtStation stated that AI art will not be banned from the site. The site added a "NoAI" tag, which explicitly disallows AI systems from using the content for learning, although the tag is not used by default. The site also promised to add functionality to hide AI-created imagery from the "Trending" tab.

The updated policy was deemed insufficient and criticized by multiple artists in the following days. For example, artist Karla Ortiz tweeted[12] a screenshot of one FAQ section, commenting that she found the response "embarrassing." The tweet (shown below, left) gained over 860 retweets and 5,000 likes in two days. On December 15th, Nicholas Kole tweeted[13] an updated protest image with the words "Round two. You're not listening" superimposed over the original (shown below, right). The post gained over 1,500 likes on ArtStation in one day.

Karla Ortiz @kortizart 1/ Deeply embarrassing response to artists protesting for their rights from @ArtStationHQ. This language is so contradictory. No artists got to decide or choose how THEIR work was used, when Al companies scraped their work from sites like Art Station (cont.) How is ArtStation dealing with questions of artist permissions and Al art generators? We believe artists should be free to decide how their art is used. Simultaneously, we don't want to become a gatekeeper with site terms that stifle Al research and commercialization when it respects artists' choices and copyright law. @ArtStationHQ. Dec 14 Here's our update on Al artwork, including new features coming to ArtStation: 4:47 PM Dec 14, 2022 : ROUND TWO NI YOU'RE NOT LISTENING NO TO AI GENERATED IMAGES

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To those who think these artists are just salty, it's not about whether AI art is art. It's about how the creators of the AI programs use supposedly non-profit organizations to acquire massive amounts of copyrighted content (without the artists' consent or even knowledge) into datasets, then use those same datasets in their for-profit AI Art algorithms to make money and harvest data.

This is especially scummy in light of how, in stark contrast to this "lmao get fucked luddites" attitude towards visual artists, the AI Music programs are carefully vetted to only use copyright-free and voluntarily donated samples (as should be the case across the board for AI stuff, honestly). They are well aware that the Music Industry Giants would be more than happy to legally bend them over for copyright infringement, which is why they are picking on individual artists who are far less likely to sue them.


Regardless of what one may believe about AI Art being art or not, Artstation is a site populated largely by career artists that use the site to be discovered by art directors. It's like artist LinkedIn. AI Art clogging the site makes it difficult for Art Directors to find people to hire and for artists to get hired. Of course they want it banned.

AI Art may be interesting as a technology, but the vast majority of AI Artists are not qualified for career art roles, as prompting is simply not a marketable skill.


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