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Google Launches Program To Pay News Outlets For AI-Generated Articles

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(CTN News) – In a recent report by AdWeek on Tuesday, it was revealed that Google has initiated a program offering payment to news organizations for publishing articles generated by a limited beta version of its AI product.

The controversial partnership, currently underway with multiple publishers, involves a commitment to publishing a specific quantity of AI-generated content over 12 months in exchange for an annual “five-figure sum.”

Google spokesperson Meghann Farnsworth defended the initiative, stating that the experimental tool aims to assist small, local publishers in producing high-quality journalism using factual content from public data sources.

Farnsworth emphasized that these tools are not intended to replace the essential role of journalists but rather to complement their work.

This marks Google’s latest venture into digitally generated journalism, following a demonstration of a news article generator to major publications like The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal last year.

However, the current program represents a more significant step towards making AI-generated journalism a reality, sparking controversy and concerns among critics.

Tech columnist Brian Merchant criticized news outlets participating in the program, stating, “If you are a news outlet who has accepted this meager deal, and especially if you are publishing AI-generated articles without disclaimers, you should be deeply ashamed.”

Emily Bender, a linguistics professor at the University of Washington, expressed her concern, accusing Google of coercing small publishers into contributing to the information ecosystem without proper safeguards.

Google Faces Concerns Over AI Impact on Journalism

While the partnership offers financial relief to struggling news publications, fears are rising that AI tools may replace human workers, leading to a decline in journalistic standards.

The history of generative AI chatbots producing low-quality and plagiarized content adds to these concerns.

The news of these media partnerships follows a challenging period for Google, with the recent removal of its image generation tool from the Gemini AI product.

The tool faced criticism for generating historically inaccurate images, prompting CEO Sundar Pichai to address the issue internally. Pichai acknowledged the imperfections of AI and pledged to review and rectify the situation.

This development underscores Google’s struggles to keep pace with OpenAI’s ChatGPT, released in 2022, as the tech giant rushes to compete in the generative AI landscape, facing scrutiny and challenges along the way.

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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