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Levi's faces accusations of 'digital blackface' over AI-generated models


Levi's faces criticism after teaming up with Amsterdam-based digital studio Lalaland to use artificial intelligence (AI) to generate images of computer-generated models wearing its clothing, as reported in The Telegraph London.

The aim of AI usage was to offer customers the chance to see how the clothes look on models that most resemble them, with the intention of boosting diversity and sustainability.

However, the company's move was widely criticised for neglecting real people of colour and offering false diversity. It was argued that the AI-generated models "feel like a way to cut out diverse models that deserve representation, jobs and exposure".

Designers and bloggers blamed as digital blackface that suggested usage of AI for white models and putting more money into the pockets of a diverse workforce.

Levi’s responded that AI would never fully replace human models but could help create a more diverse and inclusive customer experience.


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