Midjourney stops free trails post Trump’s mugshot, Pope’s image in puffer jacket

Midjourney stops free trails post Trump’s mugshot, Pope’s image in puffer jacket

Tech News

Research laboratory Midjourney has paused free trials for its users citing deep fakes and ‘abuse’ of the artificial intelligence tool. This decision comes after images of Donald trump’s mugshot and Pope Francis’ photo in a white puffer stylish jacket confused people. 

A series of high-profile fake images were created using the tool in the recent past which compelled the makers of the image generating AI to stop the free trial of their product. 

Midjourney chief executive David Holz announced on Discord that the site was stopping its free trials amid “extraordinary demand and trial abuse”. The company had tried other options, including new safeguards, but they had not been enough to stop people misusing the service during trial periods, he said.

The service Midjourney generates realistic looking images based on written prompts made by users. It launched in test mode in mid-2022, with the independent lab consistently upgrading the software.

Users have praised a freshly released version of Midjourney for improved realism in produced images.

Along with putting the brakes on new free trials, Midjourney banned certain words, such as “arrested,” from being used to prompt image creation.

“The word ‘arrested’ is banned,” a message from Midjourney stated.

“Circumventing this filter to violate our rules may result in your access being revoked.”

Noatbly, initial reports had linked the two events, because of Holz’s reference to abuse. But those images are thought to have been created by the most recent version of Midjourney – version 5 – which is not available to free users anyway.

That new update has fixed many of the longstanding errors in Midjourney, including its difficulty drawing hands, which had previously been a relatively easy way of recognising AI fakes. It is that increased accuracy that appears to have led to it being used to create those viral images of fake news events.

(With inputs from AFP)

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