Why Artists HATE AI Art! (And Why It’s NEVER Ethical) || SPEEDPAINT + COMMENTARY

Duchess Celestia
18 Feb 202317:21

TLDRIn this video, Celestia delves into the contentious issue of AI-generated art, questioning its ethical implications. She highlights the use of the 'Lion 5B' dataset, which consists of over 170 million images scraped from the internet without artists' consent, forming the backbone of many AI art models. This practice, Celestia argues, exploits artists' work without compensation and raises serious copyright concerns. Despite this, AI art continues to be used, replacing human artists in industries, which she deems unethical. Celestia calls for a shift towards more ethical practices in AI art creation, emphasizing the need for community action and revised legislation to support artists.


  • 🎨 The ethical concerns surrounding AI art generation are primarily due to the use of a dataset called LAION-5B, which contains over 170 million images scraped from the internet without the consent of the creators.
  • 🤖 AI art is created by algorithms based on text prompts, with the most popular method being stable diffusion. However, this process involves training AI on a dataset that includes stolen art, raising legal and moral issues.
  • 📈 AI art generation is a profitable industry, but the profits go to the companies that create and sell the AI models, not to the artists whose work is used as a reference for the AI.
  • 🚫 There are ongoing legal battles, with Getty Images and artists suing companies like Stability AI for copyright violations related to AI art generation.
  • 💰 Artists fear that AI art will replace human artists, leading to job losses and a devaluation of the art created by humans.
  • 🧐 The comparison between AI art and digital art is flawed because AI art can recreate references with perfect accuracy and at a scale unachievable by humans, whereas digital art tools still require human skill and creativity.
  • 🚀 While AI art is here to stay, the speaker advocates for fighting for ethical improvements in AI art generation, such as using ethically sourced datasets and ensuring human artists are still employed in creative processes.
  • 💼 Companies are already using AI art to replace human artists in some instances, such as creating book covers and generating background images for animations, which is seen as unethical and harmful to the art community.
  • 🧐 The speaker argues that AI art is not truly 'art' when it completes the entire creation process without human input, as it undermines the value of human creativity and skill.
  • 🌐 The speaker suggests that instead of resisting AI art, the focus should be on making it more ethical and artist-friendly, such as through legislation and advocating for the rights of artists.
  • ✅ The video also serves as a promotion for Squarespace, a website building and hosting platform, highlighting its versatility and ease of use for artists and businesses.

Q & A

  • What is the ethical debate around AI-generated art?

    -The ethical debate around AI-generated art centers on whether its creation is ethical, given that many AI art models use large datasets of images scraped from the internet without the consent of the original artists. This raises concerns about copyright infringement and the lack of compensation to the artists whose works contribute to the AI's capabilities.

  • Why are artists concerned about stable diffusion models?

    -Artists are concerned about stable diffusion models because they use datasets like 'Lion 5B,' which consists of over 170 million images collected without creators' consent. This practice can replicate an artist's style without permission, affecting the originality and authenticity of the artist's contribution and possibly their livelihood.

  • What is the impact of using AI art on copyright law?

    -The use of AI art has highlighted gaps in copyright law, particularly regarding the use of copyrighted material without permission in AI training datasets. This has led to numerous lawsuits, such as those by Getty Images and artists against major corporations like Stability AI and Microsoft.

  • How does Squarespace support the creator of the video?

    -Squarespace supports the creator by sponsoring the video. The creator uses Squarespace as a platform to build and host websites, showcasing features like versatile gallery options and e-commerce integration, exemplified by a website dedicated to the creator's cat, Cheddar.

  • What is the 'Dance Diffusion' program and how is it different from image-generating AI models?

    -The 'Dance Diffusion' program is another form of AI media generation created by Stability AI, focused on creating music. Unlike the AI models for art, it is built using datasets composed entirely of copyright-free and voluntarily provided music samples, making it ethically different and less controversial.

  • What are the legal actions being taken against AI art practices?

    -Legal actions against AI art practices include lawsuits for copyright infringement filed by entities like Getty Images against Stability AI, and a class action lawsuit led by artists against Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI. These legal challenges address the unauthorized use of copyrighted content in training AI models.

  • How does AI art potentially threaten the job market for human artists?

    -AI art threatens the job market for human artists by automating parts of the creative process that previously required human intervention, such as concept art and background images in animation. This automation could reduce the demand for human artists, impacting their employment opportunities.

  • Why do some people view AI art as a useful tool rather than a threat?

    -Some view AI art as a useful tool because it can automate routine or basic aspects of artistic creation, potentially aiding artists in faster conceptualization and preliminary work. Proponents argue that AI should be embraced as a technological advancement that enhances rather than replaces human creativity.

  • What is the significance of the Lyon dataset in AI art?

    -The Lyon dataset is significant because it is a primary example of a dataset used in AI art generation that was compiled from millions of images scraped from the internet without the consent of the copyright holders. This raises significant ethical and legal issues regarding the use of such data.

  • What could make AI art generation ethically acceptable to the art community?

    -AI art generation could become ethically acceptable if the datasets used were ethically sourced, with images included through proper licensing or with the explicit consent of the artists. Additionally, ensuring artists are compensated or credited for their contributions would address many concerns.



🌐 Exploring the Ethics of AI Art

Celestia discusses the ethical implications of AI-generated art and highlights the different dilemmas surrounding its creation. The video explores whether AI-generated art can be considered ethical, focusing on its impact on artists, the use of existing art to train AI, and the complexities of AI art generation. The sponsorship from Squarespace, the website-building platform, is also discussed, showcasing its features and benefits for artists.


⚖️ Legal and Ethical Issues in AI Art

Celestia explores the legal and ethical challenges posed by AI-generated art, emphasizing the use of copyrighted and stolen material to train AI models like Stable Diffusion. The discussion covers the legal issues arising from AI art, including Getty Images' lawsuit against Stability AI and other class-action lawsuits for copyright infringement. Celestia mentions the overfitting issues in AI models, where AI-generated content can resemble existing copyrighted works, and how companies knew about these issues but chose to proceed regardless.


💰 AI Art's Impact on the Art Industry

Celestia discusses the impact of AI-generated art on the job market and its potential to replace human artists. She highlights examples of companies like Tor and Netflix using AI-generated art instead of human-created art for book covers and anime backgrounds. The discussion also covers how the use of AI in art can lead to devaluation of human artists' skills and creativity, and how the rapid improvement in AI technology can pose a threat to job opportunities in the art industry.


🔄 The Future of AI Art and Possible Solutions

Celestia acknowledges that AI-generated art is here to stay and suggests focusing on making it more ethical rather than resisting it entirely. She proposes solutions to improve the ethical landscape of AI art, such as developing ethically sourced datasets, advocating for minimum human artists in creative projects, and fighting for legislation to protect artists' rights. Despite the ethical concerns, she encourages embracing technology while working towards a future where AI art can be more artist-friendly and less harmful to the art community.



💡AI Art

AI art refers to artwork created by artificial intelligence algorithms, typically based on input from text prompts. In the video, AI art is discussed in terms of its ethical implications and its impact on traditional artistry. The video questions the ethics of using AI to create art, especially when the AI models use data that may have been obtained without the consent of original artists, as highlighted by the use of the 'Lion 5B' dataset.

💡Ethical Dilemma

The term 'ethical dilemma' in the video refers to the moral challenges and controversies surrounding the creation and use of AI-generated art. The speaker discusses how AI art uses vast collections of images, often without proper authorization from the creators, raising significant ethical and legal issues. These dilemmas are at the core of the video's narrative, questioning the fairness and legality of profiting from AI-generated artworks.


Copyright is a legal concept that grants creators exclusive rights to their works. The video addresses several lawsuits related to AI art, where companies like Getty Images and individual artists are challenging the use of their copyrighted material without permission for training AI models. This forms a significant part of the ethical discussion around AI art.

💡Stable Diffusion

Stable Diffusion is a specific type of AI algorithm used to generate images from text prompts. The video mentions Stable Diffusion as a popular method but critiques it for generating images based on a dataset (Lion 5B) that includes potentially unauthorized artwork. This raises concerns about the ethical use of artist’s work without compensation.

💡Lion 5B

Lion 5B is described in the video as a dataset containing over 170 million images used to train AI art models. The controversy stems from the fact that many of these images were scraped from the internet without the consent of the copyright holders, raising significant ethical and legal issues surrounding AI art.


Overfitting in AI refers to a model learning from a training set too well, to the extent that it fails to generalize to new data. In the context of AI art, the video discusses how overfitting can lead AI to produce artworks that are nearly identical to existing works, which could infringe on copyright and diminish the uniqueness and originality of AI-generated art.


Squarespace is mentioned in the video as a sponsor and is described as a platform for building and hosting websites. The creator uses it to demonstrate the ease of creating online portfolios and selling products, like merchandise for her cat, illustrating how digital tools can support artists.

💡Job Displacement

Job displacement is a critical concern discussed in the video, particularly in the context of AI potentially replacing human artists in various industries. The speaker mentions examples where AI has been used to generate art for books and anime, leading to fears that human artists might lose employment opportunities as AI technology advances.


Creativity in the video is contrasted between human artists and AI. While human artists can reinterpret and transform their inspirations, AI art algorithms lack the ability to be truly creative—they can only replicate or remix existing works. This distinction is central to the ethical debate over whether AI can truly replace human creativity.

💡Digital Art

Digital art refers to artworks created using digital technology. The video draws parallels between the initial resistance to digital art and current attitudes towards AI art. It discusses how digital tools were once seen as 'cheating' but are now widely accepted, questioning whether AI might follow a similar path despite its ethical complexities.


Introduction to the ethics of AI art.

Explanation of how AI art is generated.

Discussion on whether AI art generation is ever ethical.

The controversy around AI's use of unethically sourced data.

Celestia's use of Squarespace for showcasing art.

The wide impact of stable diffusion on artist's rights.

Legal challenges facing AI art and its creators.

Comparisons between music and visual AI generation ethics.

Community reaction and opinion on ethical AI art.

The potential for AI art to replace human artists.

Discussion on the legality and ethical issues in digital art.

The urgency of evolving copyright laws to cover AI art.

The threat AI art poses to traditional job opportunities in art.

The need for ethical frameworks in AI art creation.

Call to action for artists to advocate for ethical AI art practices.