The future is here (and the AI fear is real)

AI writing tools are causing quite a stir right now.

So if you write words for a living, you’re probably feeling a little uncomfortable. Possibly confused. At the very least, curious.

No doubt you’re asking yourself whether the career path of a copywriter is still viable. And you’re probably wondering if machines really are coming for your job.

The truth is, no one knows the answers to these questions, and anyone that says otherwise is wildly speculating. 

But what we can do is take a closer look to try to understand the situation. 

Because whether we like it or not, the future is here, and it never hurts to keep an eye on the competition.

Separating fact from AI fiction

We’ve all heard the saying: “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Yet this is exactly what seems to be happening since the release of Chat GPT. 

It’s worth remembering that when any tech is made freely available, it often means the users become the product. Something social media should have taught us by now.

Then there’s the issue of ownership and authorship. Who owns content created by an AI writing platform? The person who prompted the tool to generate the text, or the tool itself?

The academic world is already taking action on this with some science journals banning the listing of ChatGPT as a co-author, and universities in Australia announcing a return to pen and paper exams

And what about the ethical and legal implications of claiming AI created content as your own? For some, it’s simply a savvy move to save time, but for others it raises serious questions.

What about the benefits?

As with most things in life, there are two sides to every story. So I’m going to put any reservations aside and focus on the positives.

Here it goes.

When used for research or creating outlines, AI tools can give writers more time for creativity. From this perspective, it can only be a good thing as it’s what we’re paid for in the first place.

Some writers are also using AI to kick-start the brainstorming process. This is useful for when the human brain doesn’t want to cooperate and can save writers from the dreaded blank page.

Another benefit is the chance to hone editing skills. AI-written content is usually lacking in personality and needs a human touch, which is where real writers come in (something that tech website CNET has already been doing).

I guess what I’m trying to say is this: if AI is used like an assistant, there is potential for it to be a game-changer. 

But let’s not lose sight of the potential negative effects of this technology and the fact that the actual process of writing is what makes a writer, a writer.

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