A popular AI filter on Tiktok with anime art might seem like a surefire way to get people talking, but this has gone viral for another reason.
The TikTok filter, called AI Manga, captures the user’s features and background and then uses an AI algorithm to transform the person and surroundings in the photo or video into anime-style art.
However, the filter seems a little buggy, because random images of anime girls have appeared in photos and videos without people in them.
This has understandably freaked out several users, as some people might think the AI is detecting something or someone they couldn’t see – like a ghost.
Tiktok user malmalchaichai recorded one such video in an empty hallway near a stairwell. The AI detected someone wearing red and turned it into an anime girl. “I[‘m] freaking scared,” the user said in the caption.
That said, it seems some users had a good laugh at how random the filter was.
“Now [people] use this to detect ghosts[s]? lol,” said Tiktok user Hellos. Others, like Tiktok users ash and Michael, told malmalchaichai to “run”.
Meanwhile, others, like Tiktok user 凛, got quite scared. “Brother, the fact that it is facing your direction… has a strange face and hardly any red in sight.”
But users like dior.babyyy were more curious than scared. “I’m damn curious, but I don’t want to know either. Can more people try this or deny it [it] ???!”
Tiktok user sunquickl used the Tiktok effect in a hospital corridor, where a lady in a white shirt with a teal short skirt appeared in the middle, without explanation.
Another Tiktok user NurAtiqah tried this Tiktok effect in her house.
“Checking to see if anyone else is staying at my house because things have been bad lately,” they wrote.
A small, faceless anime girl in black appeared on the screen at her doorway.
However, many users, such as 666skerrskerr, CahayaByZrh and others, were quick to point out that it was also a light tripod that the AI may have mistaken for a person.
“It is, I realized it is,” said NurAtiqah.
Test out the filter
We tested the above theory and tried the filter.
Instead of a light stand, I took a picture of our standing fan in the living room. Sure enough, the AI perceived the head of the fan as the round edge of a head, and it turned into a young woman reading a book (which was our pillow).
I also took several other photos at home. Anything that stands or sits tall that looks like it has a round head is almost consistently transformed into an anime girl.
Generally, AI filters like this are fed artwork for comparison.
They then assess the image or video and find the closest possible piece of art that can match the image.
The AI may or may not use the image in the final result, even if it doesn’t make sense.
But what about areas that are not cluttered, such as the hospital corridor or the empty hallway with a stairwell?
We’re not sure how the AI filter generated these.
But it’s likely that the algorithm picked up an anime image with a similar corridor shape or a similar hallway, and it happened to have an anime girl in the middle of it.
Either way, the filter is a fun and cute way to live life through the lens of a manga artist.
And if the AI detected an actual ghost, at least it appears as a cute, harmless-looking anime girl with an upbeat Japanese song playing in the background. Good luck with your sleep anyway.
Anna is a freelance writer and photographer. She is a gamer who loves RPGs and platformers, and is a League of Legends geek. She is also a food enthusiast who loves a good cup of black coffee.
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