This is how the AI deceived social networks with an image of Pope Francis
An alleged image of Pope Francis wearing an elegant and thick white jacket managed to fool millions of users of social networks, who thought it was re
An image of Pope Francis in a puffy white coat went viral on Twitter over the weekend , with many people apparently believing it was a real image.
According to the specialized technology site, Ars Technica, this image that impressed many users of social networks was actually made with the help of artificial intelligence, specifically with the Midjourney program.
The pope's image, created with Midjourney v5 (an AI image synthesis model), first appeared in a tweet from a user named Leon (@skyferrori) on Saturday and quickly began circulating as part of other meme tweets. which also featured similar images, including one that humorously speculated on a “lifestyle brand” of the Pope.
OKAAYYY pic.twitter.com/MliHsksX7L— leon (@skyferrori) March 25, 2023
At first glance, the fake photo looks quite realistic. And as The Verge points out, a stylish image of Pope Francis plays into our beliefs about the papacy, which often involves wild, not fake images, even though Pope Francis is known for his “humble” outfits.
Currently, the three main image synthesis models Midjourney, DALL-E and Stable Diffusion allow users to generate novel images using only text descriptions called “prompts”.
In this case, the message used to create the photo of the Pope in that impressive jacket could have been as simple as “Pope Francis in a puffy white coat,” because Midjourney has made great leaps in photorealism recently, rendering complex scenes packed with detail at from relatively simple messages.
Twitter had to put out a warning
The image went viral in a few hours and was shared millions of times, like other images inspired by that supposed photo of Pope Francis, in fact the original tweet has more than 27 million views.
Shortly after, Twitter attached a reader-added context warning to the tweet that read: “This is an AI-generated image of Pope Francis. It's not a genuine photo.”