In a story for the excellent new 404 Media, Emanuel Maiberg chronicles the advent of generative AI tools that are used to create non-consensual porn.
The report claims that the problem “is far worse than previously reported”: Virtually anyone with “even a modest digital footprint” can be used by these models to generate non-consensual imagery.
The story hits on may problematic aspects, from the blatant scraping of user-generated content and the market for custom AI models that make the generation of explicit images possible. Porn, as the adage goes, always pushes technology forward, and this holds very much true for AI.
Reporters can’t predict the future, which I presume is why Maiberg doesn’t include any rumination about the societal effects it’ll have when anyone with a computer can generate any kind of pornography at will.
He does, nevertheless, close the article with the thesis that the singularity, that old techno-utopian dream of a merger between humans and technology, has already occurred in porn. And it’s certainly chilling.
(…) it’s a good way to describe the massive changes that have already taken hold in the generative AI porn scene. An AI porn singularity has already occurred, an explosion of non-consensual sexual imagery that’s seeping out of every crack of internet infrastructure if you only care to look, and we’re all caught up in it. Celebrities big and small and normal people. Images of our faces and bodies are fueling a new type of pornography in which humans are only a memory that’s copied and remixed to instantly generate whatever sexual image a user can describe with words.