According to three people familiar with the matter, Google is testing a product that uses artificial intelligence technology to generate news stories and will be sold to companies including News Corp., owner of The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. Presenting to news organizations.
The people, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the product, said the tool, known internally by the working title Genesis, can take in information — details of current events, for example — and generate news copy. .
Google believes it could serve as a kind of personal assistant for journalists, automating some tasks to free up time for others, said one of the three people familiar with the product. and the company sees it as responsible technology that can help drive publishing. Industry Shunning the Pitfalls of Generative AI
Some executives who saw Google’s pitch called it destabilizing and asked not to be identified discussing the confidential matter. Two people said that there seems to be no recognition of the effort put into producing accurate and artistic news.
A Google spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Times and The Post declined to comment.
“We have an excellent relationship with Google and we appreciate Sundar Pichai’s long-standing commitment to journalism,” a News Corp spokesperson said in a statement, referring to the Google chief executive.
Journalism professor and media commentator Jeff Jarvis said Google’s new tool, as described, has potential advantages and disadvantages.
“If this technology can reliably deliver factual information, journalists should use this tool,” said Mr. Jarvis, director of the Toe-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York.
“If, on the other hand, it is misused by journalists and news organizations on topics that require nuance and cultural understanding,” he added, “then that is a reflection not only of the tool but of the news organizations that use it.” Can damage credibility.”
News organizations around the world are grappling with whether or not to use artificial intelligence tools in their newsrooms. Several, including The Times, NPR and Insider, have informed staff that they intend to explore the potential use of AI to see how it can be applied responsibly in the high-stakes field of news. where seconds count and precision is paramount.
But Google’s new tool will certainly raise concerns among journalists who have been writing their articles for centuries. Some news organizations, including the Associated Press, have long used AI to generate stories about affairs, including corporate earnings reports, but they remain a small fraction of the service’s articles compared to those produced by journalists. Are.
Artificial intelligence could change this, allowing users to create articles at scale that, if not edited and carefully vetted, can spread misinformation and affect how stories are traditionally written .
While Google has moved at a breakneck pace to develop and deploy generic AI, the technology has also presented some challenges for the advertising world. While Google has traditionally taken on the role of compiling information and sending users to publishers’ websites to read more, its chatbots, tools such as Bard, offer factual claims that are sometimes incorrect and more such as news publishers. Do not send traffic to official sources.
The technology has been introduced as governments around the world have called on Google to give news outlets a greater share of their advertising revenue. After the Australian government tried to force Google to negotiate with publishers over payments in 2021, the company partnered more with news organizations in different countries as part of its News Showcase programme.
Publishers and other content creators have already criticized Google and other major AI companies for using their decades of articles and posts to help train these AI systems, without compensating the publishers. News organizations including NBC News and The Times have done this. took a position Against AI stealing their data without permission.