All AI-Generated Art Should Be In The Public Domain

B.J. Mendelson
2 min readAug 28, 2022



It’s been a hot minute since I wrote a blog post.

As usual, I’ll keep this one short and sweet.

I have a subscription to Jasper, an AI writing assistant.

It’s useful, but also completely overhyped.

I don’t think people understand the amount of handholding that’s still needed to produce solid work from these AI tools.

Anyway, listen. Jasper is now doing AI-generated art. Just like Dall-E, Stable Diffusion, and MidJourney.

And while a lot of the art generated is not ready for prime time, there are some that could easily be passed off, and sold, as if it were made by a human.

The technology will only get better.

I mean, unless Russia and China team up and we (the rest of the world) get into a global war or something with them.

In this case, this discussion is totally moot.

But assuming the world doesn’t end, we need to quickly create a legal framework.

One that determines who owns this art, who can sell it, and who gets compensated.

Because if we’re being blunt, these AI tools aren’t generating art from thin air.

What you see is a unique combination of thousands (millions?) of different images plucked from all over the web, and then smushed together by an algorithm.

That means a lot of people’s art is already being used and repurposed to create these AI images without compensation or credit to the original artists.

There is a super easy solution.

But like anything that’s “easy”, a lot of people probably won’t want to do it.

That’s where you and I come in.

The solution is this: All AI-generated artwork should immediately be entered into the public domain.

All of it.

With no exceptions.

And companies offering AI-generated anything (art or writing, because the writing is also sourced from other people’s stuff as well), should have to pay a tax.

The tax isn’t to penalize them for their innovation.

The tax would be used to help fund a Universal Basic Income. (There would need to be other funding sources, of course.)

This way, as more and more of us get displaced by AI, we’ll have money coming in to help pay our bills.

I encourage you not to sleep on this issue.

It’s here.

Happening now.

And it will impact you in some way, if not now, then within the next year or so.


P.S. I host a weekly talk show with your favorite writers, actors, and artists. It’s called WAYWO.TV, and you can listen to the podcast here or where all podcasts can be found.

Read this post and more on my Typeshare Social Blog



B.J. Mendelson

B.J. Mendelson is the author of “Social Media Is Bullshit” from St. Martin’s Press.