No, AI won’t replace writers, but it worries them

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For several years now, language generator-type AIs have been getting better and better. We know in particular that artificial intelligences are capable of writing texts on a requested subject with generally satisfactory, although imperfect, results.

If we are not yet at the point of seeing an algorithm writing the next Nobel Prize for Literature, this technological evolution can have a worrying aspect for authors. Dongwook Yoon, a researcher at the University of British Columbia in Canada, has just conducted a study with them.

His research team thus tried to understand how writers perceived this technological bubbling. For this, 7 amateur authors and 13 professionals were interviewed.

AI struggles to produce creative writing

After showing them what a text generator type AI was capable of, they were asked to think about how collaborating with an algorithm could affect their business.

Amateur authors have shown themselves to be particularly disinterested in the idea of ​​working with a machine. They feel that they find joy in writing. They also say they fear that if an algorithm helps them, the text produced will not be considered a real work of a writer, and some call the use of AI “cheating”.

More surprisingly, professional writers are more interested in using a language generator if it makes them more productive. Some even consider using him as a “ghost writer” in order to materialize their own ideas in writing.

They are also very confident in the ability of an AI to produce quality texts, if the task requested remains simple. Are thus mentioned: the stylistic improvements, the reformulation, and the correction. On the other hand, and no doubt rightly, they do not trust the machine to accomplish more complex creative tasks. In this vision of things, artificial intelligence would ultimately only be a way to give free rein to the imagination and talent of authors.

But the reality may nevertheless be darker. In 2020, Microsoft announced its decision to lay off fifty American journalists and 27 others in the United Kingdom. All worked for his news portal msn. The latter have been replaced by an AI that takes over their tasks which consisted of prioritizing information, modifying titles and publishing on the site.

The latter is not exempt from all reproach and has made quite serious errors thereafter, and in particular a blunder in an article devoted to racism. You can read our article about it here.

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