"I'm so sick of this sh*t."
AI has claimed its latest victim, now that Levi Strauss is apparently going to start outsourcing its model diversity to algorithms.
Last week, Levi Strauss announced that it would be partnering with the artificial intelligence firm Lalaland.ai, which according to a press release is a "digital fashion studio that builds customized AI-generated models" in an effort to — and we promise we're not joking here — increase "the number and diversity of our models for our products in a sustainable way."
Although a company executive promised in the press release that "AI will likely never fully replace human models for us," folks are, unsurprisingly, pretty irked.
"AI generated models huh?" games journalist Jefferey Rousseau tweeted. "I guess all the people of color just don't exist anymore."
Creative workers' rights advocate Thom Binding had even harsher words for the move.
"Levi’s using AI to generate 'more diverse models' instead of, you know, actually hiring more diverse models is exactly the kind of crap you’d expect from this industry," the British union organizer mused. "I’m so sick of this shit and all the tech-mad charlatans enabling these behaviours in their clients."
As Mashable helpfully points out, this move comes about a year after the company laid off 700 people when cutting 15 percent of its staff, saving the company a reported $100 million, per USA Today's reporting at the time, which also noted that the company had experienced a drop in sales during the COVID-19 pandemic.
While we neither know how much Levi's deal with Lalaland.ai is nor whether it would be anywhere close to $100 million, it nevertheless feels very sketchy that the company would rather invest in fake diversity than the real thing after doing layoffs for reported financial reasons.
Tackling Levi's purported commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), branding expert Lisa Barone pointed out the irony in a pitch-perfect post.
"DEI is a top priority and we believe our models should reflect consumers," Barone tweeted. "So, instead of creating real opportunities for marginalized communities, we will use AI to feature people who don't exist."
"This ain't it," she added — and we've gotta say, go off.
More on AI madness: That Viral Image of the Swagged-Out Pope is an AI Fake, Dummies
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