AI SpongeBob Twitch Stream is like AI Seinfeld
A Twitch stream is now broadcasting an unusual version of “SpongeBob Squarepants” with AI.
If AI Seinfeld didn’t scare you enough, another popular comedy series gets the artificial intelligence Twitch treatment. Earlier this month, channel ai_sponge launched on the live video stream service, introducing the world to a crazier version of SpongeBob SquarePants.
Like AI Seinfeld (officially known as “Nothing, Forever”), which used the bones of “Seinfeld” as a disguise for a sprawling AI fever dream, ai_sponge takes the iconic characters of the Nickelodeon animated series – including SpongeBob himself, his best friend Patrick , his boss Mr. Krabs and nemesis Squidward. It throws them into a series of wild, meandering conversations. Presented with graphics from the 2003 video game Battle for Bikini Bottom, the streams see what appears to be an AI-controlled version of SpongeBob saying things like, “It’s gotta be sperm if we’re going to make this Krabby Patty stuff work.” or talk about Jeff Bezos.
To make it even scarier, the characters’ voices aren’t entirely robotic and mechanical; Instead, they’re often decently close approximations to their voice actors from the show, with SpongeBob sharing the same high pitched pitch as Tom Kenny and Mr. Krabs.
Tropes of the show come through in a different way; Periodically, one of the “A Few Moments Later” transition cards common throughout the show will appear on screen, complete with narration very similar to the show. Occasionally everything falls apart, with the voice becoming unintelligible gibberish.
ai_sponge launched on March 5th. Unlike Nothing, Forever, which runs 24/7 – aside from bans when the AI goes haywire with transphobic jokes – ai_sponge only streams regularly. After apparently being banned 48 hours into its existence, the channel has since started streaming every other day, usually in the mornings, for 2.6 to 4.7 hours.
According to TwitchTracker, the channel currently has around 26,000 followers on Twitch. The last stream on Friday morning had an average of 3,500 viewers watching at the same time; The maximum number of viewers at a time was 4,461. Both are peak numbers for the channel, which had a max concurrent viewership of just 572 people and an average concurrent viewership of 148 during its first stream.
Also, unlike Nothing, Forever, which was created by designers Skyler Hartle and Brian Habersberger for Mismatch Media, this AI SpongeBob show doesn’t seem to have a public owner or anyone claiming the channel as their own. So it’s technically possible that the thing isn’t solely generated by an artificial intelligence, but if not, it certainly manages to capture the feel of AI art.
“Nothing, Forever” garnered widespread attention when it debuted in December 2022, with thousands of viewers tuning in to the live stream; It also spawned some similar shows, like the 24/7 AI-generated anime Always Break Time.
At the same time, Nothing, Forever raised concerns about how AI programs affect real authors and whether its “Seinfeld” parody infringes copyright. Most notably, after returning from its Twitch ban earlier this month, the show has slightly rebooted, removing many of the “Seinfeld” insignia that got it its initial publicity. ai_sponge probably isn’t big enough for real legal action to be taken by Nickelodeon, at least right now – although the network almost certainly wouldn’t be a fan of a “SpongeBob” parody in which the main character and Patrick talk about having sex together.
You can see ai_sponge here when it streams.
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https://www.indiewire.com/2023/03/ai-spongebob-twitch-stream-ai-seinfeld-1234822004/ AI SpongeBob Twitch Stream is like AI Seinfeld