Yes, The World’s First AI Supermodel Is A Black Woman — But Is a White Creator Reaping The Benefits?
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Yes, The World’s First AI Supermodel Is A Black Woman — But Is a White Creator Reaping The Benefits?

While artificial intelligence (AI) generators are offering cool photos for your social media feed, how are they affecting society in the full scope of things?

With the current influx of AI-generated versions of users’ photos through applications like Lensa AI, there are folks pointing out what this means for the world as a whole (and from the looks of it white men’s pockets continue to increase because of it).

Meet Shudu

According to The Outlet, Shudu is the first AI model, and she’s been booked and busy.

“Within the first two years of her career, she was featured in VogueHypebeastV Magazine, and WWD, fronted campaigns for Balmain and Ellesse, graced the red carpet at BAFTA 2019 awards wearing a bespoke gown by Swarovski, released her own record and was named one of the most influential people on the internet by Time,” The Outlet reports.

While Shudu is booked and busy as a “Black woman,” there isn’t a Black woman or Black man behind the digital supermodel earning the coins.

“Do you know who Shudu is? I just found out—she’s the first AI model. She’s been ‘hired’ across the industry which means her creators, white men, NOT a Black woman, are the ones paid. And companies get to say they ran Black content without having to work with or hire Black people,” one Twitter user pointed out.

According to The Outlet, the Twitter user is right in regard to a Black figure not being behind a Black woman, who is an AI supermodel. In fact, Shudu was created by a white creator named Cameron-James Wilson.

What’s more, in the user’s opinion, things like Prisma Labs’ Lensa AI are opening the door for more things like this to happen.

“That’s what you’re enabling Lensa to do when you give them your likeness,” Vanessid explained. “The more images you give it, the smarter and more lifelike it becomes. In addition to deepfakes or putting your face somewhere it’s never been or saying something you’d never say — AI is also Blackface.”

With AI characters like Shudu, it is noteworthy to point out that she not only appears to be Black but an indigenous African. It’s also important to note that she has European features, which could be due to her being created by a white man.

Remember FN Meka?

A similar instance of AI-generated figures causing an uproar on social media happened earlier this summer when a rapper by the name of FN Meka was signed. Ultimately, he was dropped from Capitol Records after exhibiting what many believed to be stereotypical Black behaviors — all under the control of white people.