Twitch Streamers Get Constant, Creepy Eye Contact Thanks to New AI Tech

Nvidia has developed new AI-powered technology that replaces your real eyes with digital ones that never stop looking at your webcam. It’s very creepy, and just goes to show how out of character you have to be online to become a popular streamer in 2023.

That’s just how it is: To succeed in the world of livestreaming, you must always be “on,” always “engaged,” and never take too many breaks for fear of losing your potentially fickle audience. Burnout can occur quickly. We’ve seen big, medium, and small streamers lose interest in playing games online, resulting in extended breaks, panic attacks, and other issues. But what if an AI-powered tool could assist you in simulating some of that all-important engagement? Enter Nvidia’s most recent Broadcast software update.

With features like background removal and keyboard noise suppression, this suite of tools is designed to help you look and sound better while streaming. With this new version, you can now apply fake, AI-powered eyeballs to your real human face with the press of a button. And these new eyes will always be looking directly at the camera, allowing you to never stop “engaging” with your audience even as you read your chat or look around your room. It appears wild and creepy!

Some believe that this technology could benefit people with autism who struggle to maintain eye contact during meetings and livestreams. And, while I respect that use case, I’m not sure this is the path we want to take. I don’t think we all need or want constant eye contact, especially creepy, direct staring eye contact like this. I don’t think putting creepy AI eyes on everyone is a good idea. And, as one tweet pointed out, this kind of static, dead stare is not how people actually look when speaking in front of large groups. Looking away from or toward other people and cameras is natural, and it can be beneficial and even necessary.

People have been freaking out online about how creepy and strange this new technology looks, as well as how unnatural it feels. Nonetheless, there are a lot more positive responses to the above tweet and other online examples of this strange new AI gizmo: people excited about how it will help their YouTube videos or Twitch livestreams, and happy they can read chat or look away from the stream while their audience thinks they are still “engaged” with them. To me, that appears to be a very unhealthy (and unsustainable) mindset, which will eventually lead to more burnout, which AI-powered technology cannot fix, treat, or prevent.

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