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Articles written by AI and the death of magazines (1 Viewer)

Winston T. Boogie

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OK, something I was thinking about. Obviously, AI is currently a big deal. I've always suspected that on big blockbuster pictures, they would shift to having AI write the scripts. It just seemed like a natural progression for these types of films. I saw a lot recently about the death of Sports Illustrated and one of the complaints in the articles I saw was that they had been using AI to write articles for the magazine. No person was writing them.

I noticed as well, in doing internet searches, that AI is used now quite a bit to provide responses for questions you may search.

When I am reading many articles these days, articles in my newsfeed, whatever, it seems to me that many of them are just AI generated articles. One popped up today from supposedly Esquire magazine. Honestly, I don't know if that even exists anymore but the article seemed to be composed by AI. Just a bland article that noted some facts that were already out there on the net and used to generate this "new" article.

I have been reading a bunch of articles/stories from around the internet for a while now that all seem to be AI generated, to the point where I am thinking most articles are AI generated.

Is this something others have noticed and if so, does this bother you?

I will admit, it bothers me. I don't really see this going in a good direction.
 

Winston T. Boogie

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To clarify my point a bit, I was thinking with so much need for new "content" and the internet needing to be fed every second of the day, it seems very likely that people, actual human beings become more of a hassle to depend on to write this content, and using AI to just generate content would be so much easier for these things.

However, I personally want to read what a living breathing person thinks and don't want to read what some giant computer brain spits out. I saw an article a while back that said something crazy like 75% of what we are reading on the internet is not written by a person and that we are zooming toward that being 90% in the near future.

It makes me wonder, is writing something that humans will do anymore? Or are we going to just become content receptors?
 

Winston T. Boogie

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I know this is an odd topic, and I apologize for that, but it has been troubling me. I just saw something for a new device that is AI we would carry around with us that they claim will revolutionize and transform our lives...I guess in the way things like the internet and smart phones have. For me though, being the age I am, most of my existence was lived without these things, so I don't depend on them, they just are interesting tools to me. I don't consider them life "changers" more just life enhancers.

Maybe in some ways, my thoughts on this don't matter because I won't be around long enough to see what happens.
 

Winston T. Boogie

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I think we haven't even scratched the surface of the carnage that AI is going to wreak on society.

Perhaps, writing is something that it appears to be able to replace easily and why this concerned me. It seems a great temptation to dump having to pay a writer, a person with perhaps a unique skill set and knowledge...not to mention feelings and emotions and the ability to think outside the box...with a computer program that collects and assembles data into sentences. Right now, I find these articles easy to spot and I wondered if others did as well.
 

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When you say "horrible incident" what sort of incident do you imagine?
I imagine that a video of a political figure will be faked to show them in a freaky sexual situation or using a slur, etc. and that will unfairly impact an election. Or a number of high school kids will kill themselves after being humiliated by a fake video. Or, far worse, a country will enter a war over something that didn't actually happen.
 

Winston T. Boogie

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An AI designing a killer virus with no effective vaccine, and unleashing it in densely populated regions.

I imagine that a video of a political figure will be faked to show them in a freaky sexual situation or using a slur, etc. and that will unfairly impact an election. Or a number of high school kids will kill themselves after being humiliated by a fake video. Or, far worse, a country will enter a war over something that didn't actually happen.

These are dark visions of how AI could be used, no doubt, but in these visions I still see a heavy human component that would need to be in place. I don't really see an AI itself coming up with and executing these types of schemes without some level of human involvement in the process.

My fears about AI in terms of generating articles, novels, screenplays, whatever type of writing, technical writing, are that it is already there. It is doing it with no problem and really, how much do people enjoy good writing these days? I'm not sure it matters to people anymore. I think they prefer simplistic writing that gets directly to whatever point is there to be made.

I mean with articles, newspaper, magazine, internet especially, I don't think people want good thoughtful writing, what they seem to mainly want is something to confirm their bias and or feelings. The shorter the better. It's like that line Goldblum says in The Big Chill, they want something that is brief enough that they can finish it during the average crap.

Get to the point, tell me what I want to hear. AI can do this in spades.

I think the big battle here is AI is yet another "tool" that will do our thinking for us. We don't have to ponder something out, AI will spit out an answer. We don't have to remember anything, if we want to know something, just ask AI.

Humans no longer have to learn how to get somewhere on their own, GPS does the thinking for us. We don't have to learn additional languages, we have AI translating whatever we or someone else says.

Primarily, I think that writing is an expressive art and that when you read great writing you are connecting with other human beings...when you read something written by AI, you are connecting with a bunch of rapidly moving 1s and 0s.
 

TravisR

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These are dark visions of how AI could be used, no doubt, but in these visions I still see a heavy human component that would need to be in place. I don't really see an AI itself coming up with and executing these types of schemes without some level of human involvement in the process.
Yeah, I don't think the worry is Skynet becoming sentient and nuking humanity or anything. I think the problem is scumbags basically weaponizing AI.
 

Winston T. Boogie

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Yeah, I don't think the worry is Skynet becoming sentient and nuking humanity or anything. I think the problem is scumbags basically weaponizing AI.

I definitely agree that there is a high potential for people to use AI as a means to their own ends.

Where it makes me nervous is how does it change us as people, as a society? Do we get lazier? Do we lose skills we once had because we no longer use them. The map reading thing to me is a great example. I can read a map, because I grew up without GPS. I meet so many young people that can't read a map it is alarming. They don't think it is an issue and they think it is funny that I would even use a map because why would I when there is GPS.

I was just at a place yesterday and I am talking to a guy that works there. I ask if he has a map of the property, he says they do and he and a young woman bring me one. I place it on the table in front of us and ask them "So, where are we right now on the map?"

They both stared blankly at it, and were totally confused. They worked there. So, I said, "The first thing you should do is orient the map so that you are looking at it based on where we currently are."

This was no help to them but the guy started turning the map, so I thought he was getting it but this seemed to make him more and more confused. I finally said, "Start with a point you know. Like the street you turn off of to enter the property." and I pointed to it on the map. He looked and turned the map and turned some more.

Finally, I just showed them. I did not have all day. They both sheepishly thanked me and said that was the first time they actually understood the map. I have no idea if they could ever figure it out again on their own.

My wife started a hiking club. I have gone on a few of the hikes. People on the hikes will say, "Let me look at the GPS." and I will say "Well, didn't you look at the map? This trail is mostly a circle with a few places where you can deviate off of it."

And they always say the same thing to me "Well, how do you know where you are on the map without GPS?"

I forget what the device was that I saw the other day but it was an AI device you carry around, which I kind of wondered why this would be different than a smart phone. Anyway, this got me thinking "What are the skills we are losing to technology?"

Two that came immediately to mind were creativity and memory. Both of these things are likely to be heavily impacted along with things like having a sense of direction or the ability to compose a good paragraph...because people may have no use for these aspects of their humanity.
 

jcroy

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I forget what the device was that I saw the other day but it was an AI device you carry around, which I kind of wondered why this would be different than a smart phone. Anyway, this got me thinking "What are the skills we are losing to technology?"

Going back several decades, there was the inexpensive handheld calculator. Since its introduction, mental arithmetic is a lost art to many folks under age 50.
 

jcroy

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I think the problem is scumbags basically weaponizing AI.

It would have to be something more convincing than an AI version of "Q Anon", which can even fool highly intelligent + skeptical folks.
 
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