Sarah Anderson Trolled by Alt-Right & AI

Cartoonist Sarah Anderson wrote an opinion piece for The New York Times about her creations being corrupted by Alt-Right goons and by artificial intelligence thieves.

Sarah starts off by telling how she got started and how her career as a cartoonist took off.

To have found this way of communicating with others and to make it my work was, and remains, among the greatest gifts and privileges of my life.

And then…

But the attention was not all positive. In late 2016, I caught the eye of someone on the 4chan board /pol/. There was no particular incident that prompted the harassment, but in hindsight, I was a typical target for such groups. I am a woman, the messaging in the comics is feminist leaning, and importantly, the simplicity of my work makes it easy to edit and mimic.

The ways my images were altered were crude, but a few were convincing. Through the bombardment of my social media with these images, the alt-right created a shadow version of me, a version that advocated neo-Nazi ideology.

As Sarah says that was a few years ago. Now she is pestered by another problem:

And then along comes artificial intelligence. In October, I was sent via Twitter an image generated by A.I. from a random fan who had used my name as a prompt. It wasn’t perfect, but the contours of my style were there.

Read Sarah’s entire piece at The New York Times.

Sarah’s post to Twitter led to a fascinating thread of more opinions.

© Sarah Anderson