vAIsual, Dragonimages partner to offer Asian images for AI training

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vAIsual Inc., the company behind the largest visual dataset collection in the world, signed a content deal with Vietnam-based Dragonimages, which will license its collection of images showing the Asian diaspora to companies training machine learning for various purposes.

The partnership is a win for increasing diversity and representation in AI output, as well as ensuring copyright owners are compensated for their work,  the company said.

According to vAIsual CEO, Michael Osterrieder, the deal is an important step in ensuring companies who are building AI technology are doing it ethically and responsibly.

“The AI industry is in its Napster phase, where illegal downloading demonstrated the value of delivering content to consumers, but it was devastating for the music and film industry which did not anticipate the release of products and tools that blatantly ignored the standards of copyright,” said Michael Osterrieder, vAIsual CEO. “Offering custom-prepared datasets with content featured Asian people and scenes, with the consent of the original copyright owners (or their legal representatives, such as Dragonimages) is essential for the AI industry to mature into a truly commercial and viable industry.”

“The only way to ensure diversity in the datasets to train AI is to make sure the datasets used to train AI are as inclusive as possible. Working with Dragonimages helps us to broaden our scope of visual images, and represent the Asian diaspora as best we can,” says Osterrieder.

For Dragonimages, the deal represents a chance to participate in the rapidly growing text-to-image generation industry.

“Contrary to popular belief I think that AI can support and even amplify creative artists, not take away their jobs” says Dmitrii Shironosov, CEO at Everypixel Labs.

In the coming weeks, datasets will be custom-made from the Dragonimages library of commercial stock images from Asia. The datasets are specially prepared for engineers to add to their workflow for AI training and are available via the Dataset Shop.

First launched in 2022 by the “clean data guys”, vAIsual Inc’s Dataset Shop is a marketplace for visual media designed specifically for AI training purposes. The online store initially sold the largest biometrically released human dataset, consisting of more than 600,000 high-quality images, custom shot for AI training.

Dragonimages is a production studio based in Vietnam that creates catchy visual content with an Asian flavor. In 2012, they started as a contributor to stock photo agencies. Since then they have contributed 50,000 images that have been used for commercial purposes all over the world.