Leak Reveals Artists’ Work Midjourney Used for Training

Artists including Cy Twombly, Damien Hirst, Andy Warhol, Yayoi Kusama, and others have been used to train Midjourney, the AI-based image generator, raising new concerns over copyrights and privacy.

ARTnews published the story a week ago on the database of 16,000 artists used to train the image generator Midjourney. This includes a six-year-old kid among some more well-known artists. Allegedly, the Midjourney team segmented artworks based on styles, genres, movements, periods, mediums, and techniques of thousands of artists to train the model powering the text-to-image generator.

A tweet by Jon Lam teased the actual spreadsheet and the Discord server where Midjourney engineers discussed the artists and using their work. The spreadsheet does not have public access anymore but there’s an archived version available on the Wayback Machine.

It has been used in the lawsuit against the AI companies spearheading generative text-to-image AI models including Midjourney and Stability AI, filed back in November. The 24-page list even includes artists who have worked for Hasbro, Nintendo, Magic the Gathering, and more.

Notably, the US Copyright Review Board decided that AI-generated images using tools like Midjourney can’t be protected by copyright law.

By Abhimanyu

Unwrapping the fast-evolving AI popular culture.