The Irresistible Powers of Ai in Social Media

Social media may be the first frontier for total Ai acceptance.


A new viral TikTok trend offers users hyper-realistic Ai-renderings of their own face. With social media platforms giving their stamp of approval, will this be how the controversial technology wins people’s trust? 

Artificial Intelligence, or Ai, simply spits out what’s put into it, pulling from the vast catalog of digital artwork and photographs, and composing them into a unique, new image. Merely armed with a household laptop, the public can become artists themselves, typing in whatever word combinations they wish and watch the swirling, digital “paintings” flood their screens.

@metaversityedu I never expected the ending 🥵 #ai #artificialintelligence #aiart #chatgpt #dalle2 ♬ original sound - sunflwr.audios

This has troubling implications for the artistic world, with worries over Ai’s unauthorized use of original artwork and anxiety over job loss. Artists have fought back, forming a class action lawsuit against Ai-image companies such as Stability Ai, Midjourney, and Deviant Art, claiming these companies have infringed on their rights. 

However, Ai has a powerful trick up its sleeve. Delivering a lookalike portrait is a tough feat for a working artist, and not one that would come cheap for the consumer. TikTok has offered its users just that, giving people advanced Ai technology as an embedded feature in the app. Users are hand-delivered realistic portraits of themselves in seconds, capitalizing on our own facial dysmorphia when technology automizes our features back to us. By placing Ai in your iPhone, Ai seems less scary, less invasive, and more fun. 

@missdollyspartan #ai #aiportrait #fyp ♬ original sound - Chanel

This hasn’t come without problems. Users complain their features are distorted, claiming the technology is whitewashing or race-bending. As Ai is at whim to the current digital photo library, no one knows what kinds of images are included or excluded. 

It’s a tough line to navigate. While we shouldn’t be immediately dismissive of new technology, the damaging implications of unmitigated Ai are real. Issues of privacy and plagiarism exist alongside lifelike portraits of ourselves, creating a morally-muddy mess. Providing a viral, fun distraction from Ai’s dubious ethics, the technology may have won hearts and minds. 

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