“Have your people call my people, we’ll do lunch.” So goes the old Hollywood schmooze about dealmaking. But can we be far off from a day when it is AI that brokers the deals?
ChatGPT got me thinking about this. It has been a massive buzz creator since OpenAI unveiled it late last year.
ChatGPT is a perfect PR vehicle, a nice tech pick-me-up in an age when many are feeling burned by tech. It is fun to kick the tires, and people like sharing their experiences.
But many are losing sleep over its implications for the AI field, and the potential impact on our lives and careers. Sure, it’s fun to mess around with ChatGPT but what next? Will it turn on us?
Those in the creative fields are the most freaked out. This includes PR, my wheelhouse. If tools like ChatGPT can write pitches, articles and press releases, where does that leave us?
The PR and media worlds may be facing more imminent threats than being replaced by AI bots. Ezra Klein said on his podcast recently that ChatGPT can “drive the cost of bullshit to zero.” In other words, it can generate inaccurate information at scale. The tech could be a boon for fake news and disinformation. More fake news will further erode trust in media, and make the PR job harder.
Even when used by legitimate news outlets to write articles, errors can creep in. This is already happening. The Futurism blog recently outed the tech news site CNET for using AI to write erroneous articles.
Hmmm… ChatGPT, writing PR content …. publications using AI to pen articles …. one can envision a world in which we don’t need actual people for any of this.
It is an interesting thought experiment, although I don’t think we face that kind of threat anytime soon. Maybe the smartest AI will replace the crappiest writers, and generate content mill-caliber pieces. But AI like ChatGPT may actually heighten the need for the kinds of human-generated insightful and creative content that can break through to audiences and journalists.
Meanwhile, content generation is not the only app, and I do think generative AI and large language models have their place in the modern agency tech stack. Forward thinking PR teams should explore AI’s potential.
Please stay tuned if this topic is of interest – I’ll be writing more on ChatGPT and PR.