Popular AI image generator Midjourney is discontinuing its free version. The reason given by CEO David Holz is that too many people want to use the service – sometimes abusively. The backgrounds.
The pope in a white hipster down jacket, the arrest of Donald Trump – both fake pictures and a few others recently went viral. They were created with the popular AI image generator Midjourney.
But now the makers are discontinuing the previously free trial version of the software until further notice. Reason: Too much demand. There is also talk of abuse and many so-called disposable accounts.
Midjourney: Free trial ended
How The Verge and The Washington Post report, Midjourney founder and CEO David Holz justified the decision with the fact that the company noticed exceptional demand. He also shared that the hiatus is also “because of a massive amount of people creating throwaway accounts to get free pictures.”
He suspects that the rush is also due to the fact that content creators in China published a viral how-to video. In combination with a lack of graphics cards at Midjourney, the service for paying users then came to a standstill.
In addition, Holz also speaks of misuse of the software. In the eyes of the CEO, the corresponding security mechanisms are not yet sufficient – especially with regard to fake photos such as those of the Pope or Trump.
CEO Holz wants to improve security software
No special technical skills are required to produce such images. Midjourney creates them based on simple text input. That’s why Holz wants to set rules for the depiction of real people in the future. Because the images are becoming more and more realistic and the tools more and more powerful.
A first step should be to improve the AI programs that the company can use to check the images created for misuse.
End of midjourney trial will not solve problem
However, stopping the free trial of Midjourney until further notice can hardly solve the abuse problem. For as opposed to wood The Verge also explains that the free version is not responsible for deep fake photos like the one of the Trump arrest. Realistic images at this level could only be created with the latest version of the service – and it has always been paid for.
Rather, the problem is that Midjourney’s response to the politically sensitive, escalating threat of fake images has so far been piecemeal, with no major overhaul of moderation guidelines. Because the content restrictions of the software are more permissive than those of some competing services such as OpenAI’s DALL-E.
Trial might return
While he has not yet given an exact time, Holz contrasted it The Verge Nevertheless, already in prospect that Midjourney is working on offering the free trial version again in the future. An attempt has already been made to request an active e-mail. However, this measure was not enough. However, the company is back at the drawing board, says Holz.