comScore AP Robot Journalism Program Working Like Well-Oiled Machine | The Mary Sue

The AP’s Robot Journalism Is Working; AP Claims Robots Aren’t Coming for Journalists’ Jobs

But who will everyone harass about ethics now?


The Associated Press’s proposed robot journalism program has hit its stride and is working flawlessly—or closer to flawlessly than human journalists, at least. I’m not going to start worrying until they perfect their Back to the Future reference algorithm, though. Then we’re going to see some serious shit.

The AP announced back in June that they’d soon have Automated Insights software writing the boring stories that regularly consume human journalists’ souls. That would free up staff to do more meaningful journalism or organize games of Cones of Dunshire or whatever, and it seems to be working. While they haven’t quite hit the projected number of 4,400 bot-generated stories per quarter that was initially stated, the 3,000 they’ve been able to attain is a big change from around 300 done by human beings.

The robot reports actually contain less errors with no necessary editorial oversight, too, because machines are incapable of being bored into apathy by endless press release data. But no organic meatbags have have lost their jobs in the process. AP vice president and managing editor Lou Ferrara told The Verge,

Automation was never about replacing jobs. It has always been about how we can best use the resources we have in a rapidly changing landscape and how we harness technology to run the best journalism company in the world.

You’re safe for now, humans. For now.

(via Huffington Post, image via Brett Jordan)

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