AI is here and it’s dangerous AF

AI-generated artwork by Midjourney, based on the following prompt by Matthieu Silberstein: dangers of artificial intelligence german surrealism dark web — ar 16:9

Millions of jobs killed instantly

I was also pretty intrigued by the tool. It looked cool and I figured I should probably learn how to use it. I’ve spend the past month working on a pitch deck for an animated project and I certainly could use it to create a few mood boards quickly, being myself very limited in my illustrating skills. So I googled Midjourney, scrolled briefly through two YouTube tutorials, and started getting really scared. I decide to postpone my nap. Within 10 minutes — literally 10 minutes — I was ready to type my first prompt for the AI bot to generate my first digital artwork. I entered the following 15 words: star wars like landscape desert of ice with dunes at night atmosphere cinematic dramatic lighting. I clicked enter. 30 seconds later, here’s the image I got:

AI-generated image by Midjourney, based on a prompt by Matthieu Silberstein

The biggest IP theft of all time

And that’s the viciousness of AI — it can’t be creative without flat-out stealing humans’ creativity. It is intellectual property theft at an unprecedented scale. And anyone who is paying attention can already see the next target: words. Goodbye speech writers, journalists, screenwriters, novelists, translators, marketers, even coders (by the way, the day machines start coding is when they completely take over.) Then let’s go to music: goodbye singers, songwriters, composers. You think performers are in the clear? AI can’t perform a concert… well have you heard of the Metaverse? Connect the dots — nothing is stopping anyone from AI-ing a hit album, generating an avatar who will move more spectacularly than the next Britney Spears dancer-child and Cirque du Soleil combined in a VR concert you will pay hundreds of dollars to see. And AI will do it faster and for cheaper, it will sound great and have no physical limitations because it will steal from all of us artists who actually lose sleep, friends and sweat looking constantly for new ways to inspire our fellow humans.

AI is not a sci-fi movie anymore. It’s about to be in your towns, your school, your offices, your bedroom. And it is going to impact you. Big fucking time.

We’re giving our intelligence away

This is my problem with VR and AI. We, humans, are real. We, humans, are intelligent. Why are we giving that away to computers? Really what is the point? Improving productivity to increase revenue… but how far do we go? The 20th century, and arguably the middle class, was built mainly on the Fordism principle that workers’ wages needed to be increased so they were able to buy the things they were building on the assembly line. Granted, this is the 21st century, so we can do something else — but I don’t see anyone thinking about this in those terms at the moment. There doesn’t seem to be any long-term philosophical or economic theory about what the humans are currently doing to productivity and what this is going to and has already started to do to our economies and societies. Because all that seems to be happening right now is it’s putting more money in the pockets of fewer people. The wealth gap is becoming absolutely out of control, and I don’t think we need to look any further than here for the roots.

If we’re already concerned about millions of people not believing what they see, wait until they can actually see whatever they decide to believe.

Nuclear power in the hand of a 10 year old

Now, the job destruction is only one part of it. There’s also the part where creativity and innovation dies if decision makers decide to all rely on AI to save on development costs and “guarantee” success — because the bots will run in circles, finding only inspiration in things humans have created in the past. But let’s be honest, there’s probably enough there to last us a couple hundred years.

AI generated images with Midjourney by users using Emma Stone in the prompt.
  • If you see a photo on social media, make sure you look up the source and you trust it.
  • If your company needs a graphic designer or a visual artist, hire a human.
  • Stop posting pictures of yourself and your art on the internet without setting the highest privacy settings. Or stop altogether, that works too!
  • Vote for people who understand the danger this technology poses to the world of information, to privacy, freedom and to the concept of democracy.

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Your 37 year-old (French) grandpa. matthieusilberstein.com

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