AI vs. Journalists: The Modern Day Copycat Conundrum

Imagine if someone copied your hard work, then used it to compete against you. That's the beef between journalists and big tech companies like OpenAI (the ChatGPT's mastermind) and Google.

There's a group called the News Media Alliance, and they're kind of big deal, speaking for loads of journalists in North America. They've pointed out that tech giants are using their articles to make their algorithms and AI smarter. Once these AIs are trained, they can write articles that might overshadow the original ones.

So, what's the big deal? Well, with new tools from companies like Google, there's a fear. What if people start getting news from these AI tools instead of visiting the original news websites? This could mean fewer visitors, less money, and some tarnished reputations for news outlets.

The boss of News Media Alliance, Danielle Coffey, is not too happy. She's like, "They're taking our stuff and just spitting it back out!"
But what do the tech companies say? So far, they've been pretty quiet. We do know that Google thinks it's okay to use online articles to train their AI unless the authors say "no." In fact, the big publishers like New York Times and ABC NEWS Australia have already said a big "nope" by changing their robots rule for Google-Extended.

However, there is good news, though. Webmasters have some tricks up their sleeves. They can stop certain AIs and bots from hovering over their content. But to completely stop Google's AI? That's a bit tricky. They'd have to stop Google from looking at their articles altogether, which might not be a great idea if they still want people to find them on Google.

It's a bit like a playground scuffle over who gets to use the cool new toy. But this isn't just about today; it's about who gets to control and shape the news of tomorrow. So, let's grab the popcorn and see how this plays out!

Photo: DIW
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