Source: Pexels As a web publisher, site owner, or content agency, the quality of your content has a direct impact on your business. You want to be sure that the text you publish is top-notch – but if you’re ordering copy from an outside source, quality control ain’t easy. Especially when trying to identify AI-generated
As a web publisher, site owner, or content agency, the quality of your content has a direct impact on your business. You want to be sure that the text you publish is top-notch – but if you’re ordering copy from an outside source, quality control ain’t easy. Especially when trying to identify AI-generated text.
What Is AI-Generated Text?
Also known as natural language generation (NLG), AI-generated copy is becoming increasingly common. Skilled writers can manipulate the tool to produce uncanny writing, it’s true; lazy or untrained use of AI tools, however, quickly leads to redundant or repetitive writing. And search engines aren’t a fan of this type of content.
In fact, Google recently implemented an algorithm update to combat the increase in AI-generated copy. The new algorithm is designed to identify and penalize websites that use content generated by an automated system; they don’t want their front pages populated with generic, machine-written text.
In the interest of producing high-quality content, let’s look at how to identify AI-generated copy. You don’t need a degree in computer science or an expensive toolkit – just a keen eye and some common sense.
Key Differences Between Human-Written and AI-Generated Text
There are several key differences between human-written and AI-generated text. If you learn how to spot them, you’ll have no trouble identifying AI-generated copy.
Notice how the paragraph above sounded a little… derivative? That’s a hallmark of AI-generated text – sentences that say a lot, but mean nothing at all.
AI tools are trained on 45 terabytes of web information (the equivalent of 56 million books). They are not, however, trained to be creative or to think outside the box. Therefore, AI-generated text is often flat and unoriginal.
But that’s just one of the key differences to look out for. Let’s peruse the others:
1. Zero grammatical inconsistencies or errors.
It’s very rare for an AI content generator to make grammatical mistakes. Unless the writer has prompted their AI tool with error-riddled text, to begin with, the tool will follow guidelines for correct grammar and syntax.
On the other hand, human-written copy is ripe with errors; it’s part of the creative process that AI tools can’t replicate.
2. Repetition or redundancy of words or phrases.
Think of AI text generators as pattern followers. These tools aren’t freethinking in the same way that a human is – they identify and follow patterns, which means that AI-generated copy tends to use the same words and phrases over and over.
3. An absence of emotion or personality.
This is a big one: humans are great at infusing text with personality and emotion. And yes, it’s possible to push an AI tool toward flowery language if you’re particularly skilled at steering it. But for the most part, AI-generated copy is derivative and emotionless.
4. Factual errors.
AI text generators are particularly convincing when it comes to ‘stating facts’ – but they’re all bark and no bite. Statistics generated with AI are usually outdated or downright falsified.
As Steve Shwartz wrote on his blog, AI Perspectives: “GPT-3 has no commonsense understanding of the meaning of its input texts or the text that is generated. It is just a statistical model.”
5. Unusual choice of words.
When you’re looking for AI-generated copy, keep an eye out for unusual words or phrases. Human writers don’t tend to use the same words over and over; instead, they mix them up with synonyms and different sentence structures.
AI tools may appear convincing at first, but if you look closely enough, you’ll quickly spot the lack of variation in their language.
(It’s quite funny, actually – the tools tend to have their favorite catchphrases on speed dial, like “well-oiled machine,” which they use religiously as the opportunity strikes).
6. Lack of context; irrelevance.
Ever read an article that seems to be following a logical progression, but suddenly goes off the rails and starts talking about something entirely unrelated? That’s AI-generated copy for you. AI tools don’t understand context – they can only provide information that their ‘inputs’ tell them to.
7. Lack of tone and style.
Unless you are a particularly skilled content generator, it is immensely difficult to make an AI text generator embody a unique tone of voice. The default is (unfortunately) bland, disinteresting language that makes you go, “well, duh.”
If you keep these seven differences in mind while you’re reading, you should be able to quickly identify AI-generated copy before it sabotages your website or business.
What If You Can’t Tell The Difference?
Perhaps you still can’t tell robot-talk from human-talk after all this – or more likely, maybe you don’t have time. It’s a nuisance to look through every single piece of copy and manually inspect it for AI-generated content.
In that case, an AI detector is what you need. An AI classification model can pick up on generated text with over 95% accuracy. It’s a pretty safe bet (and it takes a lot less time than manually reading the copy!).
Of course, the alternative is to risk it and hope that your AI-generated content is human enough to fool readers and search engines alike. But if you’re serious about your website or business, it’s much better to invest in an AI detector and ensure that all of your copy is top-notch.
Founder / CEO of Originality.AI I have been involved in the SEO and Content Marketing world for over a decade. My career started with a portfolio of content sites, recently I sold 2 content marketing agencies and I am the Co-Founder of MotionInvest.com, the leading place to buy and sell content websites. Through these experiences I understand what web publishers need when it comes to verifying content is original. I am not For or Against AI content, I think it has a place in everyones content strategy. However, I believe you as the publisher should be the one making the decision on when to use AI content. Our Originality checking tool has been built with serious web publishers in mind!