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AI-generated images have become the latest form of social media spam

Nieman Lab: “…Our team of researchers from the Stanford Internet Observatory and Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology investigated over 100 Facebook pages that posted high volumes of AI-generated content. We published the results in March 2024 as a preprint paper, meaning the findings have not yet gone through peer review. We explored patterns of images, unearthed evidence of coordination between some of the pages, and tried to discern the likely goals of the posters. Page operators seemed to be posting pictures of AI-generated babies, kitchens, or birthday cakes for a range of reasons. There were content creators innocuously looking to grow their followings with synthetic content; scammers using pages stolen from small businesses to advertise products that don’t seem to exist; and spammers sharing AI-generated images of animals while referring users to websites filled with advertisements, which allow the owners to collect ad revenue without creating high-quality content. Our findings suggest that these AI-generated images draw in users — and Facebook’s recommendation algorithm may be organically promoting these posts…”

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