Today, Discord — a communications platform — announced its intention to present what it calls “AI” (to be more precise “machine learning”) to the service’s moderation, support and chat.
The post, called DISCORD IS YOUR PLACE FOR AI WITH FRIENDS. It is full of bright imagery and assurances about how “AI” can make all things effortless for anyone using Discord, whether they’re texting with friends or trying to moderate a group.
Why is Discord becoming the home for AI? Easy: on Discord you can enjoy AI with friends. Rather than just going solo with an app, you and your friends can see what sorts of exciting, wild and sometimes mindless results come from prompts like “robo-hamster caught in cardboard box, renaissance painting.”
It is worth adding that Discord's announcement has been met with widespread criticism from users. Many have expressed concerns, as users recognized that operating the keys to so many functional advantages across the AI technology is a bad way to the privacy and accuracy of communications on the platform.
The question from one user sounded like “Will there be an opt out button for server owners who don’t want their servers to be training material for machine learning?”. As well as another one added phrase “Ah yes, ‘sharing AI experiences,’ is exactly what I’m on discord for, my mistake in thinking I was there to spend time with my friends, network, and meet new people”.
As an artist I’m outraged by this and would like to have an option to delete all the ai from my servers, and would hope any ai “learning” *stealing my work* has an option to stop that which is on by default. pic.twitter.com/2dIWgg3OoB— Devon Meyer (@Devtective) March 10, 2023
The statement also included news of a shared whiteboard feature, which many users had been eagerly anticipating. However, this was overshadowed by the fact that the whiteboard will come with an AI-powered text-to-image generator, that can be iterated and tested in diverse ways.
So, reactions on social media have been overwhelmingly negative. Many users feel that the company is adding unnecessary features to the platform in an attempt to keep up with the demands of capitalism, rather than focusing on what users actually want: a simple chat program that allows them to connect with others.
Overall, it seems that Discord's decision to introduce AI-generated imagery into their platform has been met with skepticism and concern from users. Only time will tell whether this move will be ultimately beneficial or harmful for the platform and its users.