Several major text-to-image generators have been launched so far, such as Midjourney, Stable Diffusion, or DALL-E. As you probably know, billions of photos, paintings, and illustrations are used to train these programs so they could render your text into an image with better accuracy.
Have you ever wondered if your photos were used for this purpose? If you have, there’s now a way to check it.
Have I Been Trained is a website that lets you search through a whopping 5.8 billion images that were used to train popular AI art models. All the images are a part of the LAION-5B training data set, used to train Stable Diffusion and Google’s Imagen. There are two ways to search through the library: you can type in the keywords or upload a photo you took to see if it was used for algorithm training. I tried it with a photo of mine to see what it looks like, here’s what I got:
The website is a project of a group of artists named Spawning. They are “building tools for artist ownership of their training data, allowing them to opt into or opt out of the training of large AI models, set permissions on how their style and likeness is used, and offer their own models to the public,” the group writes on its website. “We believe that each artist ought to have the tools to make their own decisions about how their data is used.”
Just before writing this article, I was thinking about how we live in the era of major artistic and technological evolvement. AI-generated photos are already being used in a variety of ways, some of them pretty shocking, in my opinion. AI-generated art already wins competitions and photography websites like Flickr welcome it on its platform with a dedicated category for it.
On the other hand, there are websites that don’t see this type of art on their platform, like PurplePort. Some artists are also concerned about the future of their work since AI picks up specific traits of their style and copies them to thousands of images that could be produced in minutes. “I’m very concerned about it,” said Greg Rutkowski, an illustrator famous for work on Magic: The Gathering and Dungeons and Dragons.
“As a digital artist, or any artist, in this era, we’re focused on being recognized on the internet. Right now, when you type in my name, you see more work from the AI than work that I have done myself, which is terrifying for me. How long till the AI floods my results and is indistinguishable from my works?”