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How AI could help publishers prove the value of their journalism

I’ve sat in on a few sessions and roundtables over the past few weeks where creatives and artists have argued that ‘human-made’ will be the key differentiator in the age of AI. That having a human thumbprint on the work will increase its value, because it is truly original and unique.

The issue with AI as a tool for creation is that it raises the question of how much human interaction is required for something to be considered ‘human made’. It will be very hard to prove that any art is ‘human-made’, as the point at which that becomes ‘made by AI’ is a moving target. The same is true for journalism: is a journalist writing a 400 word piece and asking Bard to expand it to 1200 words a ‘human-created’ article? What about just a prompt to rewrite another piece from the web?

In this piece for our site (check out our growing analysis section) I’ve argued that publishers should be looking for ways to demonstrate the provenance of their journalism, from inception through creation to publishing. There are issues with the idea, which I explore in the article, but it’s potentially a way publishers can turn the advent of AI into a way to demonstrate the value of their journalism amid all the pink slime.


Carole Cadwalladr facing heavy legal costs in Arron Banks case

Even if Banks wasn’t such an odious little creep with nothing to offer society, this would be a chilling story. I’ll let the Guardian News & Media explain: “The very high costs award made against Carole despite her journalism having been found to be in the public interest is very concerning, and has the potential to stifle freedom of expression in this country.”


Tensions flare inside The Messenger

I haven’t seen a single positive thing said about The Messenger other than ‘it exists’. It has a wildly skewed proportion of men to women writers and a business model that seems straight out of the early days of MailOnline. Now it seems that the mood inside the title itself is uncertain and fraught. 


New Future CEO Jon Steinberg: Other publishers ‘would kill’ for what we have

Future certainly has a lot of strengths, from a huge stable of dependably profitable magazines to an ecommerce ecosystem and tech stack that other publishers are slowly building towards. But it’s hard to read this interview with Steinberg, which opens with the acknowledgement that the first half of the year is challenging, and not feel a little like he’s overegging those strengths a bit. Future are, after all, still exposed to the headwinds in the market.


More from Media Voices

Read: How local media organisations can get started with AI

Deciding where to start, both with identifying use cases for AI in publishing and actual implementation, can feel overwhelming. From securing data sources to getting colleagues on board, here is some advice from those who have already taken the leap, in this extract from our Practical AI for Local Media report.

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