AI Writing

The Impact of AI-Generated Articles on the Future of Journalism

AI writing news? Discover the Impact of AI-Generated Articles on Journalism's future. Accuracy, ethics & human journalists - all discussed!

Like many other industries, AI is rapidly transforming the field of journalism. Integrating AI in articles and on journalism as a whole has created a host of important discussions about its implications for the industry including its effect on news accuracy, the role of human journalists and ethical considerations. Here’s what you need to know about how AI-generated articles are affecting the world of journalism right now. 

What Exactly Constitutes Ai-Generated Articles?

AI-generated articles are articles created by AI tools. They’re created by entering a prompt, such as keywords or phrases about certain topics. The AI then goes to work, stitching together information from its vast repository of data while leveraging machine learning and other algorithms to identify the next word in the sentence. The end result is an authentic-looking (albeit somewhat dry and repetitive) article. 

Most notably, AI-generated articles lack the originality and insight of human-crafted articles. AI can be used to quickly whip up an outline or speed up the writing process, but there should still be a human in the loop. The reason for this is two-fold: AI tends to “scratch the surface” of a given topic, and secondly, if it doesn’t know the answer, it will make up statements with complete conviction.

What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Using Ai-Generated Articles?

AI-generated articles have a number of pros and cons associated with them. Notable advantages include: 

Increased efficiency and productivity - AI can produce content faster than human writers through its ability to analyze large datasets, saving time and resources.

Lower operational costs - By automating routine tasks, media outlets can allocate resources to more in-depth investigative journalism. 

Improved accuracy and objectivity - AI helps minimize human error and bias in reporting, presenting facts objectively and impartially. 

Greater personalization - AI can tailor content to readers’ preferences over time, increasing engagement and overall satisfaction. 

However, with these benefits come several significant drawbacks, including: 

Limitations in Understanding - AI still struggles to understand nuances and subtlety which is vital for impactful journalism

Ethical Concerns and Misinformation - AI can inadvertently generate or spread misinformation which is one of the major dilemmas of relying completely on algorithms for news. 

Job Displacement - AI has the potential to replace human journalists, which impacts employment and professional skills development. 

Loss of the “Human Touch” - Journalism is about more than just reporting facts; it’s about telling stories that resonate on a human level. With AI-generated articles, this loss of the human touch is felt on a considerable level. 

Impact On The Journalism Industry

As you can see above, AI has the capacity to churn out news at a speed that’s simply unparalleled. This frees up the manpower of media outlets to concentrate on pieces with more substance. Having AI analyze relevant datasets saves a great deal of time when it comes to data-driven journalism. 

But in creating journalistic content at this scale, integrity and creativity are seriously eroded. Things that come naturally to human writers, like infusing a piece with emotion and making it engaging and interesting, are foreign to AI. Beyond this, AI is known to invent false narratives or even exhibit biases inherent in its training data, which can seep through in the “facts” it generates. 

AI and Journalistic Integrity

AI has the potential to quickly verify facts and analyze hoards of data, uncovering patterns or trends that might not be immediately apparent to individuals. We’ve already touched on the issues of potential biases within the algorithms, but there’s also concerns about transparency and accountability. 

AI can behave partially based on its training data. In order to maintain journalistic integrity, there needs to be a balance between the technological advances that AI presents, and the human touch that machines cannot emulate. 

Ethical Implications

As AI becomes more intertwined in the news process, it raises critical ethics questions that we as a society must answer. For example, who “owns” the content that AI creates? Who’s “watching the watchers” when it comes to training the AI? What about privacy concerns? 

Public opinion in terms of media accuracy and trust is already highly eroded. As human journalistic skills get more and more devalued, there are fewer diverse voices in the media and in the industry as a whole. This in turn leads to a more homogenized perspective. And that is to say nothing of how far the media will let the AI go. 

In short, ethical standards need to be created so that this tool, like so many others, continues to benefit society while minimizing harm. Journalists, ethicists and technologists as well as the general public all need to come together to decide how AI will be used from this point forward, because it certainly won’t be stopping any time soon. 

Democratization of News Access

Another key benefit of AI is that it has dramatically lowered the barriers to entry for the sharing of news; letting a wide range of voices contribute to the public discussions. AI allows for a broader distribution of news by automating the heavy lifting of  content creation and custom curation. This leads to news that is closely tailored to match the individuals’ interests.

However this custom-curated news is also a double-edged sword, as it creates the very real possibility of an echo chamber in which AI can massively amplify disinformation. Making sure that AI contributes positively to the democratization of news means adding in mechanisms that promote transparency, diversity and accuracy. In this way, AI can improve access to a wide range of information which in turn creates a more informed public. 

What Will Be the Role of Human Journalists in the Future? 

AI won’t exactly storm through the newsroom and gobble up everyone’s jobs. Most likely, as with every other new technology that came along (including TV, the internet, social media and so on), AI will work alongside humans, creating a sort of hybrid model where the two forces work together to amplify each other’s strengths. AI works best when handling data-intensive tasks while humans do better at areas that require more emotional intelligence and creative storytelling. 

If you’re concerned about AI-generated articles affecting the quality of your journalism, or you suspect that AI-written content is amplifying disinformation or misinformation, you can check to see if your content has been written with AI using Originality.AI. With over 99% accuracy on the latest AI models including ChatGPT 3.5 and 4, Google Bard and many more, Originality.AI uses the latest in machine learning and NLP programming to uncover AI-written text in journalism and beyond. Special monthly credits packages and ongoing access are available for individuals and teams. Try it now and see the results for yourself!

Sherice Jacob

Plagiarism Expert Sherice Jacob brings over 20 years of experience to digital marketing as a copywriter and content creator. With a finger on the pulse of AI and its developments, she works extensively with Originality.ai to help businesses and publishers get the best returns from their Content.

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