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The creator of these photos confirmed they were generated by artificial intelligence.
Target is facing boycotts after conservatives criticized its Pride clothing collection. One of the critiques was against Target’s collaboration with the artist Abprallen, whose work includes a design that reads "Satan respects pronouns."
Target never sold that design, and later pulled Abprallen’s products from its shelves, but social media users are claiming that Target is now selling children’s clothing that features satanic images.
Several Facebook posts shared a screenshot of another Facebook post containing photos of a red goat-like mannequin and of children wearing clothing with a pentagram and images of horned creatures. "Target," reads a caption above the image. "#ExposeEvil"
The posts were flagged as part of Meta’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)
Target is not selling these clothes for children. These photos were generated using artificial intelligence.
A search through Target’s website does not show any of these products.
The Associated Press debunked this claim, and found that the images were first posted May 26 by software developer Dan Reese on the Facebook group "AI Art Universe," with the caption "They're Targeting Our Children."
The group’s description welcomes those who "share a passion for using AI in your work."
PolitiFact reached out through Facebook Messenger to Reese, who shared screenshots of the process used to create the images using Midjourney, an AI image generator.
Reese said he was inspired to create the images after he heard false rumors of Target selling satanic kids’ clothes. "I thought it would be fun to use AI to explore what a satanic fashion line for kids could possibly look like," he said.
We rate the claim that Target is selling children’s clothes with satanic designs False.
Facebook post, May 28, 2023
Facebook post, May 29, 2023
Facebook post, May 30, 2023
Associated Press, No, Target isn’t selling satanic children’s clothes, June 2, 2023
Facebook post, May 26, 2023
Washington Post, Trans designer dumped by Target explains how he got smeared as Satanist, May 26, 2023
Facebook direct message exchange with Dan Reese, June 5, 2023
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