Google Helps Fund Press Association’s Push for AI Writers

Google is keen on developing artificial intelligence. In an effort to make artificial intelligence even more useful, the technology giant is providing financial aid to the Press Association. This particular project wants AI to write news stories. It is an ambitious project, but one that can probably succeed given enough time and resources.

Press Association’s AI News Writers

Writers may think that they are at a lower risk of replaced by artificial intelligence in the future. However, news writers may find themselves in that awkward position sooner than later. AI can write well and produce more than their human counterparts. Quantity and quality are not the same, which may be human writers’ saving grace for at least a little longer.

The Press Association news agency is raising funds to wield artificial intelligence as a tool to write stories. Right now, the agency submits news stories to media outlets across the United Kingdom and Ireland. Depending on how this AI venture goes, that presence may be expanded to an international scale. It depends on whether or not the initiative gets enough funding and how well the news pieces are written.

Google was among the first to make a financial contribution to this new AI venture. The technology giant’s Digital News Initiative Fund pledged $806,000 to the Press Association news agency. The goal is to use this money and improve the overall quantity of news pieces to nearly 30,000 every single month. Achieving this goal will be challenging, but Press Association is teaming up with Urbs Media to make it happen.

All of the AI news pieces will be written in collaboration with human journalists. The writers will create story templates, and the AI will fill in the blanks and aid with localizing each article. It is not the first time we see a news agency use artificial intelligence. The LA Times has used AI to write news stories about earthquakes for nearly three years now. There is a bright future ahead where human journalists and AI writers will complement each other’s work.

It is impossible to write proper news pieces without human involvement, according to Press Association’s Peter Clifton. The main goal in harnessing artificial intelligence is to create new opportunities and help in scaling up the volume of local stories. Powered by proper templates, the AI simply needs to scour sources for any additional information and turn it into a full news piece.

There will likely be some pushback on this project. It is possible AI solutions will threaten journalist jobs in the future, even though this is not the goal of the Press Association. 

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