Last Friday, a portrait produced by artificial intelligence was hanging at Christie’s New York opposite an Andy Warhol print and beside a bronze work by Roy Lichtenstein. On Thursday, it sold for well over double the price realized by both those pieces combined.
“Edmond de Belamy, from La Famille de Belamy” sold for $432,500 including fees, over 40 times Christie’s initial estimate of $7,000-$10,000. The buyer was an anonymous phone bidder.
The bidding late this morning lasted just under seven minutes, during which the buyer competed against an online bidder in France, two other phone bidders and one person in the room in New York. When the hammer came down, the bids had reached $350,000, the final price before fees.
~a week after i gave them permission – i retracted it & asked for credit whenever they posted the images (this was once i figured out they weren’t doing an open source project, but were selling the outputs)
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The art that was auctioned was the result of an AI designed by Robbie Barrat, but he was not credited or compensated for his work. His implementation is a derivation of work by Soumith Chintala, who was also uncredited by the students who took home half a million dollars at Christie’s. The source code is distributed under a BSD license, which requires crediting the authors in the derivative work.
If you want open source software to live up to its early promises, you’ve got to defend people’s right to build a reputation and career on the work they produce. Shouldn’t Adafruit be using its platform to talk about the way open source ideals can fall apart in application, and how it would go about creating the world it would like to see?