Absurdist Productions will not use AI art in any capacity, in any projects moving forward. We have many artists who are close personal friends and, as creatives, are firm believers in supporting other creatives. Part of what makes Transformation look so good is the art created for us by talented artists.
When we began working on Transformation, we were not fully informed about the ethical issues surrounding AI art. We had planned from the start to feature art from real human artists, but we also thought that using some AI art as the background textures of some pages would be interesting. The surrealistic and often grotesque look of the AI art at that time fit the theme of a monstrous transformation. This seemed like a reasonable compromise.
Information about the ethics of AI art came to our attention after it was too late to make further changes. We have had long conversations with several artists we know and done more research into the technology. AI art is problematic in the way it samples copyrighted material to train the algorithm without the consent of artists, photographers, or photograph subjects. While there is debate on how the technology “learns” from these sources, based on our understanding of the technology we feel that it is harming artists and essentially stealing from their work. While, in retrospect, we should have been more cognizant of this fact before we decided to implement this technology in any capacity, we regret that we were not.
However, we have now realized our mistake and are making this important decision.
We will no longer be using AI art in our publications. Instead, we will find more ethical ways to produce the same or higher-quality products. This may include commissioning more custom art, sourcing stock art, or other options.
Additionally, we will ensure that we are more transparent about any new technologies we are experimenting with so that you, our backers, can weigh in on the discussion and let us know of any issues we may not be aware of. Transparency is essential to successful crowdfunding. As a company, we are committed to continually improving our transparency and communication with backers.
We thank you for your patience as we all learn and grow together in this ever-changing technological landscape.