AI avatars are starting to flood the social media “influencing” sphere. Seeing how artificial and impersonal the influencer lifestyle already is, maybe it was inevitable.
The “Instagram influencer” is a relatively new phenom: an attractive, usually young, person flaunts certain brands on social media for revenue. The phrase “digital creator” is a common tag on bios, and countless young women have made a living off of selling their looks on Instagram.
So how might AI play into all this? Well, there are now hundreds of AI internet personalities flooding social media. And they look pretty convincing. Victor Tangermann reports,
Thanks to the advent of AI-powered image generators like Stable Diffusion and Midjourney, some are now fabricating entire feeds of internet personalities that don’t actually exist.
The result is a fascinating journey through the uncanny valley: haunting Twitter and Instagram feeds showing these AI-generated influencers — virtually all taking the form of conventionally attracted women — posing and preening in virtual thirst traps, to the delight of sometimes tens of thousands of seemingly human fans.-Victor Tangermann, Fully AI-Generated Influencers Are Getting Thousands of Reactions Per Thirst Trap (futurism.com)
Tangermann also notes that some of these AI avatar creators are sometimes drawing from real life influencers, often without permission.
This alludes to a post we ran earlier this week covering a recent conversation between philosophers J.P. Moreland and William Lane Craig. Moreland spoke on the AI revolution and how it would inevitably offer something “better” than real life. He connected this to church sermons and worship but extended the critique to sexuality and relationships. “Men won’t get married,” he said bluntly. Instead, they’ll spend their lives “interacting” with false personas that can’t really love them and who they can’t love either. It’s a safe, riskless, but completely dead way to live life.
While AI will make a lot of things easier and more convenient, nothing can replace visceral human connection and relationships. The AI influencers might look beautiful and appealing, but they are artificial, and we shouldn’t be duped into interacting with them as if they are actual persons.