Seeing is not always believing: A Quantitative Study on Human Perception of AI-Generated Images

by   zeyu-lu, et al.

Photos serve as a way for humans to record what they experience in their daily lives, and they are often regarded as trustworthy sources of information. However, there is a growing concern that the advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) technology may produce fake photos, which can create confusion and diminish trust in photographs. This study aims to answer the question of whether the current state-of-the-art AI-based visual content generation models can consistently deceive human eyes and convey false information. By conducting a high-quality quantitative study with fifty participants, we reveal, for the first time, that humans cannot distinguish between real photos and AI-created fake photos to a significant degree 38.7 Our study also finds that an individual's background, such as their gender, age, and experience with AI-generated content (AIGC), does not significantly affect their ability to distinguish AI-generated images from real photographs. However, we do observe that there tend to be certain defects in AI-generated images that serve as cues for people to distinguish between real and fake photos. We hope that our study can raise awareness of the potential risks of AI-generated images and encourage further research to prevent the spread of false information. From a positive perspective, AI-generated images have the potential to revolutionize various industries and create a better future for humanity if they are used and regulated properly.


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