Misinformation remains one of the great risks of artificial intelligence. Proof of this is a photo that has been doing the rounds on the web in recent days: the Eiffel Tower stands in front of bales of hay and tractors. Too bad that the image was fake and that no farmers were protesting near the symbol of the Parisian capital.
Who is behind the photomontage
The image was published by the account @thethrillonairelife on Instagram and was shared on all social networks by many users, who did not bother much to verify its authenticity. The profile specified that the photo had previously been published by @ifonly.ai, another account that describes itself in its bio as a “mix of art and artificial intelligence”, which created it with an algorithm called Midjourney.
In addition to not checking the source, users who stumbled upon the fake photo did not delve into the news related to the farmers’ protests, stopping at the surface. A frequent problem in the digital world, accustomed to a bulimic absorption of external inputs, which often leads to difficulty distinguishing what is true from what is false. Even the growing inattention in the activity favored by many on social media, that is scrolling, has a fundamental influence on digital disinformation. In fact, it would have been enough to zoom in slightly on the “shot” to realize the presence of imprecise or even unreal details. Yet, concepts are processed in a few seconds, just enough time to take a quick look at one piece of content and immediately move on to the next, in an infinite terminal loop. Artificial intelligence is, therefore, a powerful tool, which can make an enormous contribution to art and to a series of human activities which can thus be simplified. However, we must learn to use it with caution, without being fooled and, when sharing images generated by it, specifying their origin.