• Shutterstock will begin selling photos generated by artificial intelligence alongside those created by humans.
  • OpenAI’s DALL-E 2 software will create the AI pictures
  • Both companies say that human artists whose work inspired the AI will be compensated.

Shutterstock, a photo licensing provider, will begin selling photos generated by AI alongside those made by humans. OpenAI’s DALL-E 2 software will create the AI pictures. Both firms claim that human artists whose work inspired AI would be rewarded.

Shutterstock plans to reward artists who inspired the artificial intelligence

Last month, the photo licensing provider was among many picture companies that began deleting AI-generated art from their archives. According to a representative, the firm will continue to prohibit individuals from uploading AI-generated art to its site in general, but its work with OpenAI is an attempt to embrace new technology in an ethical manner.

Shutterstock Will Be Providing Photos Created By Artificial Intelligence
The company is still deleting photos created by AI from its archives if it is not created with this new collaboration

 The two firms will also create the Shutterstock Contributor Fund to “compensate artists for their contributions” and offer royalties when their intellectual property (IP) is exploited, according to a spokesperson.

The firm stated, “When the work of many contributed to the creation of a single piece of AI-generated content, we want to ensure that the many are protected and compensated (instead of allowing an individual to generate and take full credit for that content).”

According to a representative, a contract was reached in which the AI that creates the photos was trained solely on photographs from the company’s archives, rather than on information discovered elsewhere online.

Shutterstock Will Be Providing Photos Created By Artificial Intelligence
Artists will be rewarded, if their work on Shutterstock helped the AI create the photo that was sold

Also, contributors whose work was used to train the models will get a part of the royalties from AI sales, but they did not specify what percentage of money would go to contributors or how the contributions would be distributed. It is frequently impossible to tell what input data was used to generate any given piece of output.


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Paul Hennessy, Shutterstock’s CEO, also commented, “The mediums to express creativity are constantly evolving and expanding. We recognize that it is our great responsibility to embrace this evolution and to ensure that the generative technology that drives innovation is grounded in ethical practices. We have a long history of integrating AI into every part of our business. This expert-level competency makes Shutterstock the ideal partner to help our creative community navigate this new technology. And we’re committed to developing best practices and experiences to deliver on our purpose, which is to empower the world to create with confidence.”

Shutterstock Will Be Providing Photos Created By Artificial Intelligence
The company says this is a step toward embracing the new technology

“The data we licensed from Shutterstock was critical to the training of DALL-E. We’re excited for Shutterstock to offer DALL-E images to its customers as one of the first deployments through our API, and we look forward to future collaborations as artificial intelligence becomes an integral part of artists’ creative workflows,” said Sam Altman, OpenAI’s CEO.

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