Sports Illustrated is the latest media company damaged by an AI experiment gone wrong – Daily Journal

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NEW YORK (AP) — Do computer-generated writers … write computer-generated stories?

Sports Illustrated has seen its name tarnished in the near future for being less than forthcoming — if not valid — about who or what is writing its stories at the dawn of the artificial intelligence era.

The once-mighty publication said it was firing a company that produced articles written on its website under the guise of authors who appear to not exist. But he denied published reports that the stories themselves were written by artificial intelligence tools.

Earlier this year, experiments with AI at the Gannett newspaper chain and the technology website CNET broke down. Many companies are experimenting with the new technology at a time when they fear it could put their employees out of work. But the process is full of journalism, which markets its value-based products based on truth and transparency.

While there’s nothing wrong with media companies experimenting with artificial intelligence, “the mistake is trying to hide it and not doing it properly,” said University of Maryland professor Tom Rosenstahl, who teaches journalism ethics.

“If you want to be in the business of telling the truth, as journalists do, you shouldn’t tell lies,” Rosenstiel said. “A secret is a kind of lie.”

Conflicting accounts of what happened

Sports Illustrated, now run as a website and published once a month by Arena Group, was once a weekly known for its flamboyant writing on Time Inc. magazines. “The intent was great,” said Jeff Jarvis, author of “Magazine,” a book he describes as a catalyst for industry innovation.

Monday, Futurism website reported that Sports Illustrated used stories for product reviews whose authors could not be identified. Futurism found an image of an author, Drew Ortiz, listed on a website that sells AI-generated images.

“Drew has spent most of his life outdoors, and he’s excited to guide you through a list of the best products to keep you safe from natural disasters,” says the magazine’s author profile.

All authors with AI-generated portraits have disappeared from the magazine’s website when Futurism Sports Illustrated asked. No explanation was given.

Futurism quoted an unnamed source in the magazine as saying that artificial intelligence is also being used for some content creation – “despite what they say it’s not.”

Sports Illustrated said the articles in question were created by a third-party company. Advon businessThe magazine confirms that they are written and edited by humans. Advon had the writers use pen names, “something we don’t do,” Sports Illustrated said.

“We are removing the content and ending the partnership while our internal investigation continues,” the magazine said. A message to Advon was not immediately returned Tuesday.

in press releaseSports Illustrated Union said he was shocked by the Futurism story.

“We need answers and clarity from Arena Group management regarding what exactly was published under SI’s name,” the association said. “We ask the company to adhere to basic journalistic standards, including not publishing computer-generated stories by fake people.”

The first is not such a situation w

Gannett An experiment has stopped for a moment In some of its newspapers this summer, it used AI to prepare articles on high school sporting events after errors were discovered. The articles contain the line “LedeAI”.

Some of the unpleasant publicity that resulted could have been avoided, Jarvis said, if the newspapers had written about the role of technology and how it helped create articles that journalists couldn’t. Gannett said the staffing shortage had nothing to do with the testing.

Last summer, it was reported by CNET Used AI to create descriptive news articles Financial services topics about CNET Money Staff. The only way for readers to know that technology is involved in the article is to click on the author’s attribute.

CNET discussed it with readers only after the experiment was discovered and written about by other publications. in NoteCurrent editor Connie Guglielmo said 77 machine-generated stories were posted, and several corrections were required. The page went on to further clarify when AI is being used in story creation.

“The process may not always be easy or pretty, but we continue to embrace it, and believe that any new technology can make life better,” Guglielmo wrote.

Other companies were in front of their experiments. Buzzfeed for example a Travel article In Santa Barbara, California, for author Emma Hegar and Buzzy the Robot, “our creative AI assistant.

“We produce AI-native content — cool new stuff you can’t do without AI, and stuff that’s improved by AI but created by humans,” Buzzfeed said in a note to readers.

The Associated Press has been using technology to help write articles on financial earnings reports since 2014 and, more recently, on some sports stories. At the end Each such story “It’s a note about the role of technology in production,” the spokesperson said.

for instance, Short text About the NBA game earlier this month, it had the following note at the end: “The Associated Press reported this story using technology provided by DataScrew and data from Sportradar.

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David Bauder writes about media for the Associated Press. Follow him at http://twitter.com/dbauder

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