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Generative AI will make it easy to flood the internet with human-like content armies

Generative AI technologies like ChatGPT can generate tremendous volumes of cheap, human-like content on the fly. The benefits are many, but so are the potential downsides. Factal co-founder Cory Bergman recently told Harvard’s Nieman Lab that content farms will flood the internet with work that’s virtually indistinguishable from human writers.

Copyright and plagiarism are certainly issues that come to mind, and so are propaganda and disinformation. Imagine using ChatGPT to spam human-like comments and social media posts that support an agenda. Or a war. Thinking of running for office? Time to mobilize the AI content army.

Take a look how ChatGPT works. Cory demoed it during a recent Global Security Briefing.

Will intel analysts start to use AI to produce their reports? Possibly. There’s already a service testing it: Unrestricted Intelligence uses ChatGPT “to produce to produce intelligence assessments on any topic.” (Go ahead, give it a try.) The creators admit the results are full of flaws, and it’s clear from a few attempts that the AI is regurgitating its training, rather than providing intelligence insight. But if history has taught us anything, early technologies like this will only improve.

Here’s Bergman again from the Nieman Lab piece:

Just look at the pace of change. OpenAI is expected to release a significant upgrade of ChatGPT in the next several months. Other companies aren’t too far behind. The more data it consumes and the more “parameters” of the data it learns in training, the better it gets. Humans will write less, AIs will write more. For good and bad, AI-written content will flood the internet, an amalgamation of the work of millions of human writers and journalists who came before it.

In the meantime, generative AI tools are great writing assistants. For example, take your latest security exercise. Copy-paste your notes into ChatGPT and ask it for an after action report. It won’t replace your report – at least yet – but you may be surprised with what you see.

At Factal, we put AI to work to surface and triage critical events from the open internet. But we also believe in the power of human judgment. We combine our AI technology with experienced journalists to verify details and provide key insights faster than ever before. Factal members can respond confidently without having to slog through the noise.

In 2023, a lot more of what you read will start with an AI writing the first draft.

Top photo: Created by DALL-E-2 by copy-pasting the first paragraph from the story

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