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Generative visual AI in news organisations: perceptions, challenges, and opportunities

February 28 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm AEST

AI Generated image: large blue face overlooking person with computers

Join Hacks/Hackers Brisbane in-person at ABC South Bank with ADM+S researcher, Dr T.J Thomson who will share findings from interviews with leading news organisations across three continents, about the opportunities and challenges they see in using generative visual AI and the principles and policies that would inform their use.

AI services that provide responses to prompts, such as ChatGPT, have ignited passionate discussions over the future of learning, work, and creativity. AI-enabled text-to-image generators, such as Midjourney, pose profound questions about the purpose, meaning, and value of images yet have received considerably less research attention, despite the implications they raise for both the production and consumption of images.

Drawing on interviews with leading news organisations across three continents, including Australia, this presentation identifies how news editors or equivalent perceive generative visual AI and outlines the challenges and opportunities they see for the technology in relation to their news operations. It also identifies the extent to which these newsrooms have policies governing how generative visual AI is used or, if not, the principles that would inform their development.


TJ Thomson

Dr T.J. Thomson is an Affiliate of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making & Society (ADM+S) from RMIT University. He is also a senior lecturer in visual communication and digital media at RMIT and an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow. T.J.’s research is united by its focus on visual communication. A majority of his research centres on the visual aspects of news and journalism and on the concerns and processes relevant to those who make, edit, and present visual news.

He has broader interests in digital media, journalism studies, and visual culture and often focuses on under-represented identities, attributes, and environments in his research. T.J. is committed to not only studying visual communication phenomena but also working to increase the visibility, innovation, and quality of how research findings are presented, accessed, and understood.

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A rapidly expanding international grassroots journalism organisation with thousands of members across four continents. Their mission is to create a network of journalists (“hacks”) and technologists (“hackers”) who rethink the future of news and information.

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Cover image by T.J Thomson on Midjourney


February 28
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm AEST
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ABC South Brisbane
114 Grey St
Brisbane, QLD 4101