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Nearly 90% of Consumers Want Transparency on AI Images finds Getty Images Report

Nearly 90% of Consumers Want Transparency on AI Images finds Getty Images Report

  • People don’t want to feel that they have been fooled or lied to - 98% of consumers agree that 'authentic' images and videos are pivotal in establishing trust
  • Industries with high levels of consumer trust such as healthcare/pharmaceuticals, financial services, and travel are increasingly expected to be transparent
  • People feel less favorably towards brands that are using AI generated visuals to create people or products

NEW YORK, April 30, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Getty Images (NYSE: GETY), a preeminent global visual content creator and marketplace, has today released the report "Building Trust in the Age of AI." This groundbreaking study aims to empower marketers and communications professionals by providing data-driven insights into the integration of AI generated content within marketing and communications strategies.

Supported by the company’s cutting-edge visual and creative intelligence platform, VisualGPS, the report draws from the global perspectives of over 30,000 adults in 25 countries from 2022 to 2024. It offers valuable insights into consumer attitudes toward AI-generated content in advertising, its impact on brand trust, and key factors that distinguish exceptional visual content, irrespective of whether it is captured by humans or generated by AI.

One of the central findings of the report is the critical importance of authenticity and trust in consumer engagement with brands employing AI-generated imagery, with almost 90% of consumers globally wanting to know whether an image has been created using AI. This focus on authenticity emphasizes the importance for brands to thoughtfully consider how to incorporate AI-generated images into current workflows.

Nearly 90% of Consumers Want Transparency on AI Images finds Getty Images Report

Dr. Rebecca Swift, Getty Images’ Global Head of Creative Content, commented: “Businesses across all industries are asking the question, ‘should we be engaging with AI generated content and if so, how?’ Successful advertising has always been grounded in highly creative and authentic visual storytelling – and this remains as true today as ever, regardless of whether a brand chooses human-shot or AI-generated content. Our report serves as a compass for brands wanting to move beyond the hype and deeply understand their audience’s expectations so they can speak to them with the right content in the right channels, building consumer trust and driving meaningful action.”

To help brand professionals and business leaders in navigating AI generated content creation, Getty Images’ report "Building Trust in the Age of AI" outlines the following key considerations:

  • Is AI the right tool for your campaign?
    Reflect on the core message of your campaign and carefully evaluate which type of imagery (AI-generated, UGC, pre-shot), including the format (image or video), aligns with its objectives. The report revealed that 98% of consumers agree that 'authentic' images and videos are pivotal in establishing trust, indicating that where trust is the key aim, pre-shot content may perform better in engaging consumers.

    VisualGPS also revealed, given the high levels of trust and expectations associated with industries such as healthcare/pharmaceuticals, financial services, and travel, they are increasingly expected to be transparent so a thoughtful approach to content types will protect your consumer relationship.
  • AI is a tool, not a replacement for creativity
    From prompting highly conceptual image outputs to crafting a full campaign with human-shot visuals from scratch, creativity remains indispensable in connecting with consumers, especially amid growing distrust and visual saturation - in fact, 76% agree ‘It’s getting to the point where I can’t tell if an image is real’. Generative AI tools can only access what has been, not react to the present or future—or consider how people currently feel about a brand or product. Human creativity continues to be paramount in forging that connection.
  • Keep authenticity and transparency in focus
    According to VisualGPS research, people define 'authentic' as 'real' or 'the real thing', followed by 'true' or 'truthful', with 87% of respondents considering it important for an image to be authentic. The research also revealed that AI-generated depictions of non-human subjects were perceived as less misleading than AI-generated images featuring people or real products. If authenticity is a focal point for the campaign, consider using high-quality pre-shot images and videos to connect with your audience. If you opt for using AI-generated content, particularly if featuring people, consider labeling that content so your audience feels you have been transparent with them.
  • Safeguard against potential risks
    While many tools can ignite your creativity, some tools are safer than others. Generative AI by Getty Images, trained exclusively off permissioned content from Getty Images’ creative library, is 100% commercially safe to use and offers indemnification on every image empowering you to create and market with confidence and free from legal risk.

To access the full Getty Images’ VisualGPS report, "Building Trust in the Age of AI", click here.


Getty Images’ VisualGPS Reports offer unparalleled visual and creative intelligence backed by a rigorous methodology that combines visual insights from over 60 visual content and advertising experts with cultural insights, proprietary search and download trends from Getty Images and iStock (+ 2.8 billion searches each year), and consumer perspectives from ongoing global consumer surveys covering over 250 topics. In partnership with a world-class global research firm MarketCast, this research platform has been tracking shifts in consumers’ needs consistently over the past five years. The data from the "Building Trust in the Age of AI" report was collected from July 2022 to September 2023. The sample included adults aged 18 and above, with a sample size of 7,500 per survey. The research covered 25 countries, including Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Singapore, the UK, US, and others.

Media contact:
Ilse Noguez

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