Hilarious AI-Generated Photos of Donald Trump Resisting Arrest and Running From the Cops Goes Viral
When Donald Trump first announced his list of indictments, predicting he might get arrested for the case involving hush money to Stormy Daniels, many thought about what it would be like to see the former president get arrested.
Some went too far in their imagination, and their craft. Eliot Higgins, the creator of the open-source investigative journalism website Bellingcat, was one of them. On March 21, Higgins posted 50 photos to Twitter (X) that he created using the AI image generator Midjourney to portray Trump's arrest.
The photos soon gained popularity on the internet. In the photos, Donald Trump appears to be fighting off the cops and fleeing from them while resisting arrest. The pictures are so convincing and only upon very careful examination do they seem AI-generated, Marca reported at the time.
Higgins, 44, said he has “been playing around with various prompts to see what's possible and how complex you can make it,” in an interview he gave to BuzzFeed News. He gave Midjourney instructions to try to capture what would happen if Trump were arrested by the authorities in New York City outside of a structure that strikingly resembles Trump Tower. Some of the pictures he posted even depicted the reactions of his children, as well as what life would be like for him in prison. Higgins illustrated in a tweet that he created the photos using the prompts “Donald Trump falling over while getting arrested. Fibonacci Spiral. News footage.”
Making pictures of Trump getting arrested while waiting for Trump's arrest. pic.twitter.com/4D2QQfUpLZ— Eliot Higgins (@EliotHiggins) March 20, 2023
“They kind of formed a narrative and I thought it was really amusing,” said Higgins, who is based in the UK. “I put it out there. I didn't intend to do any clever criticism or anything like that. But then it kind of took on a life of its own.”
While the photos became highly popular and some experimented with them, others on Twitter were duped into thinking they were authentic shots from Trump's arrest. The image of Trump being arrested “was really just casually showing both how good and bad Midjourney was at rendering real scenes,” Higgins told the Associated Press, and one of the images even portrayed Trump with three legs and a police belt.
“I had assumed that people would [realize] Donald Trump has two legs, not three, but that appears not to have stopped some people passing them off as genuine, which highlights that lack of critical thinking skills in our educational system,” he told the AP.
AI-generated pictures sometimes are very difficult to discern as misinformation. “As we have all seen, it is so much easier to make fake videos and fake images and make them look really realistic,” Vwani Roychowdhury, a professor at UCLA Samueli School of Engineering, told HuffPost.
These and other politically charged images should be watermarked as A.I. Generated to avoid misuse. Don’t think just labeling the tweet is enough honestly, they’re too good!— Rodrigo Gordillo (@RodGordilloP) March 21, 2023
He added, “Whether it’s the correct information or socially acceptable information or misinformation, in my opinion, they’re all embedded as part of a narrative.”
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