Frustrated Lego fans respond to “bizarre” AI art controversy – Creative Bloq

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By now you’ve likely seen the news that Lego was caught using AI-generated images for an online Ninjago-themed quiz. It seems that increasingly AI art is becoming a more serious threat to creative careers, and Lego’s fanbase isn’t shying away from voicing their strong opinions.

Many users across the internet pointed out the hypocrisy of Lego’s AI art controversy, while others simply questioned “why?”. With Lego sets, TV series and even a spinoff film, Lego Ninjago is certainly not short of reusable assets. While the company claims that the incident was a simple mishap, the internet is certainly not letting up on the criticism, so here’s what the internet really thinks of Lego’s apology.

Lego used AI images for ninjago characters on their official website from r/Ninjago

Discussions began on the r/Ninjago subreddit where users found the AI art debacle “bizarre”, with u/Pepsi_Boy_64 claiming it was “quite frankly unprofessional” for such a financially prosperous company. Voicing the primary concern of many fans, fellow Redditor u/Slight-Bathroom-6179 asked “Why did they go through all that instead of just screen shooting scenes from the show?”. 

Elsewhere on X, YouTuber PenPlays weighed in on the conversation, highlighting the brand’s contradictory apology that denounces AI art while “humouring it anyway” – “You can’t have both,” they say. “Aside from the images being technically incorrect, it goes against their entire brand value of nurturing creativity,” says Gordon McLachlan, Co-founder of digital agency Primate. “If authenticity doesn’t matter, perhaps we should start buying cheap knock-off products instead?” he scathingly adds. 

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Perhaps the most illuminating response was from @itsabrickthing – a creative who identifies as an official Adult Fan of Lego (AFOL). “Hypothetically, if a designer was interviewing for a job with LEGO and brought in a portfolio of AI images, they wouldn’t get the job because their portfolio would not be up to LEGO standards,” he says. “Why would LEGO be ok with using AI in the first place?” he questions.

Unfortunately, this is just one of many rising cases of AI art controversy and it’s becoming increasingly normalised despite severe backlash from creatives. With huge influential companies like the BBC embracing AI art, it’s a troubling time for creatives but that shouldn’t stop us from voicing our opinion and calling out brands for blatant hypocrisy.

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If you’re tired of seeing your timeline clogged with AI art, why not learn to create your own ‘human-made art’ – read our guides to the best drawing tablets and digital art software to get started, or take a look at our collection of Procreate tutorials to learn some new skills.

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