Is AI art theft?


Puritan Board Freshman
I know the artists say it is, but when I was fiddling with it a while back I thought to myself, "what is it really doing?"

To my knowledge, they essentially present pictures to it, have the machine "learn" what the particulars are, the style, etc, and from there the specifics can be meshed together via prompt. Is this any different from a human being learning to draw for their own sake, using others as references?
I say no, given the description that you have provided of what exactly is being done.

Observing details, and then reincorporating someone else's techniques into your own work is not theft.