Writers not using AI being accused of using AI… by AI apps

14 June 2024

I’m not anti-AI (well, not too much), but when there’s a one-hundred percent reliance on their abilities, and more crucially, the judgements some AI apps make, then there’s a problem.

News that (human) writers and journalists, who have never used AI-powered tools in their work, but are being fired for apparently doing so, because an AI app determined they were, is disturbing to say the least. This is particularly concerning, given the integrity of many AI-powered apps that check for supposed AI generated content, is dubious to begin with:

Some advertise accuracy rates as high as 99.98%. But a growing body of experts, studies, and industry insiders argue these tools are far less reliable than their makers promise. There’s no question that AI detectors make frequent mistakes, and innocent bystanders get caught in the crossfire.

Sure, there should be processes to check the veracity of work published publicly, especially (but not exclusively) on news outlets. As readers, we’re relying on the accuracy of the information presented to us. If the use of AI generated content is suspected though, it should be flagged for investigation. By people who will look into the issue raised. Not by another AI-powered app that will make a final — quite possibly incorrect — call.

But: there’s the rub. To quote — not plagiarise — Shakespeare. There probably are no people on hand to investigate. There were likely let go, and replaced by AI-powered apps, because it saved someone money. What a tangled web we weave. I get the horrid feeling we’re going to be hearing a lot more stories like this, going forward.


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