Tech, Trends

TikTok’s new AI creating bizarre green screen backgrounds

Of course, it gets NSFW very quickly in the wrong hands.

words by: Sahar Khraibani
Sep 5, 2022

A new in-app text-to-image AI generator that TikTok rolled out recently has been creating bizarre green screen backgrounds and creators are taking full advantage of it. The AI generator lets you type in any prompt — any weird thing that comes to your mind — and then it will generate an imagine that will automatically become the video’s background. The short-form video app’s camera screen allows users to access this effect, which is called the “AI green screen.”


The introduction of the new filter coincides with the rise in popularity of text-to-image AI generators, particularly since the release of OpenAI’s DALL-E 2.


It’s important to observe that these AI generated images TikTok is offering (free of charge, might we add) are still basic compared to the output that we’ve already seen with text-to-image AI generators that have become popular in the past year.  While DALL-E 2 and Imagen can produce photorealistic visuals, TikTok’s model only creates abstract images.


It is very likely that the reason this output is not as sophisticated as other AI-generated text-to-image programs is that TikTok may be trying to adhere to the app’s community guidelines—especially when it comes to suggestive and violent images—as well as images with strict copyrights. If the model used by TikTok was as intricate and photorealistic as the ones used by DALL-E 2 or Imagen, some people would probably use it to produce unsettling visuals and content. To prevent these problems, TikTok might have chosen an abstract model.



Photo via The Verge


TikTok’s focus on abstract imagery in this text-to-image AI function is apparent by the fact that the app suggests some prompts when the effect is selected. The prompts are simple and suggest scenes such as “village in the mountain,” or “snorkeling in a purple ocean.” But of course, you have complete freedom in the prompt that you choose. Although the model will provide abstract artwork if your prompt contains nudity or violent language, nothing will be sufficiently obvious to merit restriction in accordance with the app’s community guidelines.


Some popular TikTok trends are being used with this filter, namely one trend that prompts users to enter their name into the generator to see what their “aesthetic” is like.


Of course, this filter has limitations, as it is accessible to a large number of users. It seems, for the time being, to have one main purpose: Using the generator to create backgrounds for TikTok videos by way of a green screen, rather than creating full artworks and compositions.


In related news, this invite-only collage app is trending all over TikTok as well.