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AI-generated content and fake news concept

Navigating Writing Risks with AI

While some of us are excited about using AI, we need to think things through rather than use it with blind enthusiasm. AI can’t distinguish between public and private information, and if it learns private information about us, it will expose that information to anyone using AI. It doesn’t matter if we inadvertently add that information or if it gathers it from other sources. 

We need to evaluate platforms to ensure they meet strict security and privacy standards, which brings us to the near impossibility of doing that for most people using AI.

Lack of Creativity and Originality in AI Writing

We think of AI-generated content as polished and error free. What I have noticed is that it sounds impersonal and unoriginal. I can tell when AI has written something rather than a human. And honestly, those sales emails I am getting don’t inspire a response. AI depends what data is has, leading to repetition of phrases, ideas, and narratives. Imagine reading a book and realizing it’s the same as another book with different character names. What a disappointment.

Exploring the Ethical Implications of AI Writing

Here’s where things get murky. AI writing sparks ethical concerns, specifically regarding plagiarism and the devaluation of content. The risk of inadvertently plagiarising someone’s work is high as AI paraphrases, borrowing from existing sources. Several authors have complained that their copyrighted work is being used without permission, which steals and then devalues their work. 

Plus, AI poses the threat of spreading false information or deceptive content, posing a major risk to what feels like an already divided society. It’s important that we move forward carefully.

Ethical concerns signifying risks for authors in AI writing

Impact of AI on Human Writers

Human writers are concerned about losing their jobs. Rightfully so. Right now, anyone replacing a human writer with AI risks producing poor content that does not inspire readers the way human writers can. However, that may change as AI matures.

The Crucial Role of Human Oversight in AI Writing

AI writing tools depend on data and algorithms to function. If the data is unreliable or influenced by bias, the resulting content will probably lack depth and accuracy, particularly in niche areas. We need humans to oversee the input and output to ensure quality, unbiased, and ethical content.

Now, let’s look at the ugly side of AI writing—the risks and dangers that demand our attention now.

The Need for Rigorous Fact-Checking in AI-Generated Content

This is big. One of the most alarming dangers is the widespread dissemination of disinformation and fake news. AI-generated content may convince readers of purposeful falsehoods meant to harm. Disinformation in disinformation out becomes a viscous cycle. It can influence how the public thinks, impact policy decisions, and create social unrest. It is imperative that we rigorously fact-check and verify what AI is being fed and generating.

Addressing Bias in AI: Importance of Diverse and Inclusive Datasets

Biased data can lead AI algorithms to perpetuate discrimination and inequality. Racist in, racist out. Misogynistic in, misogynistic out. And so forth. In order to address this, it is crucial to have diverse and representative datasets that promote fairness and inclusivity. And that brings us to who is in charge of AI inputs. Should a corporation be in charge or an organization interested in the public good?

Navigating the Privacy Pitfalls of AI

While some of us are excited about using AI, we need to think things through rather than use it with blind enthusiasm. AI can’t distinguish between public and private information, and if it learns private information about us, it will expose that information to anyone using AI. It doesn’t matter if we inadvertently add that information or if it gathers it from other sources. 

We need to evaluate platforms to ensure they meet strict security and privacy standards, which brings us to the near impossibility of doing that for most people using AI.

Anticipating the Unforeseen

Finally, we need to prepare for unexpected outcomes as AI progresses. We need to be vigilant to harmful ideologies or unintended miscommunications.

While AI can offer several benefits to authors, we must not only be aware of but also address its limitations and dangers. If you decide to use AI, do so with care, acknowledging both its benefits and its dangers and downfalls.

Considering these potential risks, we can develop and implement AI in a way that benefits us instead of causing harm.

Quick Action Items for Ethical AI Writing

After thinking through information like this, we often ask, “Well, what can I do?”

Here are three ideas on what you can do to gain a a deeper understanding of the risks and ethical considerations associated with AI writing and take steps to be part of shaping AI for our benefit.

  1. Stay Informed:
  2. Review AI Tools’ Policies:
    • Action Item: Take a look at the terms of service and privacy policies of AI writing tools you use or are considering using. Look for transparency about data usage, plagiarism prevention measures, and commitments to ethical practices. 
  3. Engage in Ethical Discussions:
    • Action Item: Invest time to participate in discussions with fellow authors or online communities about the ethical considerations of AI writing. 

If you are working on a book and would like some AI free writing prompts, download Writing Prompts for Nonfiction Authors.

Author Nation is your go-to resource for becoming a successful nonfiction author, from planning to promotion and everything in between. 
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