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AI is coming to your newsroom, and it’s a good thing

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Let’s take a moment to shift our focus away from Robojournalism and consider a different perspective on AI’s role in the newsroom. David Sallinen, CEO and Founder of Upgrade Media in France, offers a hopeful insight amid the disruptions caused by AI.
In essence, he suggests that AI’s true significance lies in its potential to enhance audience engagement, particularly targeting those who tend to avoid traditional news sources, while simultaneously allowing news organizations to concentrate on subscription-based models.
Admittedly, AI is already making its presence felt in newsrooms, sometimes without explicit awareness or control, which raises concerns about potential issues. This is why initiatives like Spinoza, a collaborative effort among 12 French news organizations to develop journalistic AI, are welcomed by Upgrade Media.
While much attention is given to generative AI, or robojournalism, Sallinen argues that the real advantages of AI lie in its ability to address the challenges posed by evolving audience preferences. Specifically, he believes that AI can play a crucial role in content strategies and enhancing reader engagement.
One significant challenge is “News Avoidance,” which has garnered attention due to its potential negative implications. However, Sallinen suggests that this issue may not be as dire as portrayed. At the recent INMA World Congress of News Media in London, contrasting views on news avoidance were presented. While some argue that it’s a myth, citing subscription figures, others point out that there’s a substantial audience, particularly among younger demographics, who claim to avoid news.
Instead of dismissing these audiences, Sallinen suggests that AI could offer a solution by tailoring content to their preferences. For example, a study in France found that when the term “news” was replaced with “information,” respondents showed a higher interest in staying informed.
This presents an opportunity for news organizations to bridge the gap between traditional news consumers and younger, more elusive audiences. AI tools can be utilized to analyze audience behavior and preferences, leading to customized content that resonates with different segments of the population.
At Upgrade Media, research has shown that AI can significantly enhance engagement by providing tailored summaries and formats that appeal to diverse audiences. This understanding informs their content strategy, allowing them to reach various demographics effectively without the need for additional resources.
In conclusion, Sallinen emphasizes that AI is not just about robojournalism but rather about leveraging technology to adapt to changing audience dynamics and preferences. By embracing AI-driven strategies, news organizations can navigate the challenges of modern audiences while maximizing engagement and relevance.
Source: mediamakersmeet.com
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EU’s new AI rules: Industry opposed to revealing guarded trade secrets

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New regulations in the European Union (EU) are set to compel companies to increase transparency regarding the data they use to train artificial intelligence (AI) systems, potentially unveiling closely guarded industry practices, reports the Times of India.
Since OpenAI, supported by Microsoft, introduced ChatGPT to the public 18 months ago, there has been a surge in public interest and investment in generative AI. This technology enables rapid generation of text, images, and audio content.
As the AI industry expands, concerns have emerged regarding how companies source data for training their models, particularly whether using content from popular books and movies without creators’ consent constitutes a breach of copyright.
The EU’s new AI Act, phased in over the next two years, mandates stricter regulations while allowing time for businesses to adjust to new requirements. Nevertheless, the practical implementation of these rules remains uncertain, notes the report.
Mandating “detailed summaries”
A contentious provision of the AI Act requires organizations deploying general-purpose AI models like ChatGPT to provide “detailed summaries” of the training data. The newly established AI Office plans to release a template for these summaries by early 2025 after consulting stakeholders. However, AI companies oppose disclosing their training data, arguing it as a trade secret that could unfairly benefit competitors if made public, the report reveals.
In the past year, major tech firms including Google, OpenAI, and Stability AI have faced lawsuits alleging unauthorized use of content for AI training. Despite US President Joe Biden’s executive orders addressing AI security risks, legal challenges regarding copyright remain largely untested, the report adds.
Backlash against OpenAI
Amid heightened scrutiny, tech companies have struck content-licensing deals with media outlets and websites. OpenAI, for instance, has partnered with the Financial Times and The Atlantic, while Google has collaborated with NewsCorp and Reddit.
Despite these efforts, OpenAI drew criticism in March when Chief Technology Officer Mira Murati declined to confirm whether YouTube videos were used to train its video-generating tool, Sora, citing potential violations of company terms and conditions.
Source: business-standard.com
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Picsart teams up with Getty to take on Adobe’s ‘commercially-safe’ AI

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Picsart and Getty Images are joining forces to develop an AI image generator exclusively trained on Getty’s licensed stock content.
According to Picsart, their AI lab is constructing a bespoke model from the ground up to power this tool. It aims to provide the platform’s paying subscribers with the ability to generate images that come with full commercial rights. This initiative seeks to address persistent concerns about potential copyright violations associated with AI-generated content. The Picsart / Getty Images generator is slated for launch later this year and will be accessible through Picsart’s API services.
This collaboration bears similarities to Adobe’s Firefly AI model, initially introduced as a prompt-based image generation tool within Photoshop last year. Adobe has since expanded its integration across various Creative Cloud applications. Adobe’s model also emphasizes commercial safety by training on stock images from Adobe’s own library, along with openly licensed or out-of-copyright content. However, questions remain about the integrity of the training data and user trust in Adobe’s approach.
Getty Images has previously ventured into commercially-focused AI products through partnerships with Bria AI and Runway, and by teaming up with Nvidia to introduce “Generative AI by Getty Images,” leveraging its extensive catalog of licensed images. Adobe’s widespread integration of the Firefly model into popular applications like Photoshop, Illustrator, Lightroom, and Express may pose a challenge for Picsart’s new offering in terms of attracting creatives away from Adobe’s established ecosystem.
Source: theverge.com
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Microsoft to delay release of Recall AI feature on security concerns

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On June 13, Microsoft announced that it will postpone the rollout of its AI-powered feature “Recall” with new computers next week due to privacy concerns. Instead, the tech giant plans to offer Recall for preview to a smaller group later, following feedback and additional testing.
Recall is designed to track various activities from web browsing to voice chats, compiling a searchable history stored on the user’s computer. This allows users to easily retrieve past actions, even months later.
Originally slated for broad availability on June 18 for Copilot+ PC users, Recall will now undergo a preview phase exclusively within Microsoft’s Windows Insider Program (WIP) in the coming weeks. This decision, as stated in a blog post by the Redmond, Washington-based company, underscores their commitment to ensuring a trusted, secure, and reliable experience for all customers.
Copilot+ PCs, introduced in May, feature advanced AI capabilities aimed at enhancing user interactions and productivity. The WIP, a platform for software testing, enables enthusiasts to preview upcoming Windows operating system features.
Microsoft intends to incorporate feedback from the WIP community before extending the Recall preview to all Copilot+ PC users in the near future.
Following the feature’s announcement, concerns over privacy were swiftly voiced on social media, with some users fearing potential surveillance implications. Elon Musk, prominent technologist and billionaire, likened Recall to a scenario from the dystopian series “Black Mirror,” highlighting societal apprehensions about the impact of advanced technologies.
Source: reuters.com

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