Valve has clarified its stance on AI art on Steam, following concerns that the company is banning games that use AI art. Speaking to IGN, Valve said that it will not ban AI art outright, but that it will take steps to ensure that AI-generated art is clearly labeled as such.
“We are continuing to learn about AI, the ways it can be used in game development, and how to factor it into our process for reviewing games submitted for distribution on Steam,” Valve said in the statement.
“Our priority, as always, is to try to ship as many of the titles we receive as we can. The introduction of AI can sometimes make it harder to show a developer has sufficient rights in using AI to create assets, including images, text, and music. In particular, there is some legal uncertainty relating to data used to train AI models. It is the developer's responsibility to make sure they have the appropriate rights to ship their game.”
A tweet from Simon Carless that has gone viral recently brought attention to an old reddit post from three weeks ago. The post, which was made on the /aigamedev subreddit, revealed that Valve had rejected the developer's game for using some AI art assets. However, this does not seem to be a blanket policy for Valve.
An Evolving Process for Case-by-Case Moderation
Valve's spokesperson said in the statement that the company does not have a specific policy for AI-generated content, but rather evaluates each game on a case-by-case basis. Valve considers various factors when deciding whether to allow or remove a game that uses AI-generated content, such as the quality, originality, and legality of the content, as well as the transparency and honesty of the developers.
“We know it is a constantly evolving tech, and our goal is not to discourage the use of it on Steam; instead, we're working through how to integrate it into our already-existing review policies. Stated plainly, our review process is a reflection of current copyright law and policies, not an added layer of our opinion. As these laws and policies evolve over time, so will our process.”
Valve also acknowledges the potential benefits and challenges of AI-generated content for both gamers and developers. He said that AI-generated content can offer increased variety, accessibility, and creativity for games, as well as reduce development time and cost. However, he also noted that AI-generated content can pose ethical, technical, and legal issues, such as plagiarism, quality control, and intellectual property rights.