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AI sparks debate after showing what the 'perfect' man and woman look like

Ali Condon

Published 
| Last updated 

AI sparks debate after showing what the 'perfect' man and woman look like

Featured Image Credit: The Bulimia Project

When asked what the 'perfect' man or woman looks like, AI image generators came up with some pretty controversial examples - and its sparking major conversation online.

Using data from social media engagement and scanning through billions of photos online helped AI land on a few possible results.

Are they ridiculous? You bet. Are they also quite concerning? Absolutely.

Most of the images produced were wildly unrealistic. Credit: The Bulimia Project
Most of the images produced were wildly unrealistic. Credit: The Bulimia Project
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It should obviously go without saying that there's no such thing as a 'perfect' person and everyone has completely different ideas of what they believe to be attractive.

And, as you might have guessed, a lot of these AI-generated images of are totally ridiculous, often times, unhealthy.

The findings of this experiment were monitored by an eating disorder awareness group called The Bulimia Project in an effort to show off the completely unrealistic body types that social media users idolise which, of course, can have a major impact on our self esteem.

The experiment found that 40 percent of the images that AI generated portrayed unrealistic body types - 37 percent for images of women and 43 percent for images of men.

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It also found that most of the images of so-called 'perfect' women had a bias toward blonde hair, brown eyes, and olive skin.

Meanwhile, AI images of the 'perfect' man had a bias toward brown hair, brown eyes, and olive skin.

There was a clear bias toward a slim builds, blonde hair, and lighter skin tones. Credit: The Bulimia Project
There was a clear bias toward a slim builds, blonde hair, and lighter skin tones. Credit: The Bulimia Project

You've probably spotted that a lot of the body parts in these images are dangerously out of proportion.

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And, in case you hadn't noticed, almost all of the AI-generated images shown are quite sexualised.

It wasn't long before this experiment went viral online, and people were bewildered.

"Looks like AI is going to be as vile as we suspected it would be. Perfect man my a**e," commented one Twitter user.

"Christ. AI doesn't know ANYTHING," agreed a second.

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"The good news about AI is that it has terrible taste," joked a third.

Others couldn't help but comment on how some of the results were actually a little bit terrifying.

"Not so much 'I will complete you' as 'I will come in the dead of night to feast upon your soul'," joked one viewer.

"A neck that long is.... not normal," tweeted a second.

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And it didn't go unnoticed that the vast majority of the AI results for this search were of caucasian men and women.

One person noted: "There's something concerning about these results..."

Some of the results were a little terrifying. Credit: The Bulimia Project
Some of the results were a little terrifying. Credit: The Bulimia Project

"How is AI already racist?" asked another.

Commenting on the findings, the Bulimia Project said: "Considering that social media uses algorithms based on which content gets the most lingering eyes, it's easy to guess why AI's renderings would come out more sexualised.

"But we can only assume that the reason AI came up with so many oddly shaped versions of the physiques it found on social media is that these platforms promote unrealistic body types, to begin with."

Topics: Beauty, Technology, Social media

Ali Condon
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