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Jan 17, 2024

Your Local Channel News, but AI? 

Rolled newspaper with the headline Artificial intelligence


The news that we view each and every day, whether it be from your local newspaper, internet, or TV, is imperative so that you can keep up with the latest news going on worldwide. However, amid the spread of information are different writers and views and inconvenient information that you may not be interested in. 

Recently, there has been a new way to deliver news to people, which is with the use of Artificial intelligence. Let me explain.  

An upcoming news station called 'Channel 1' will be delivering personalized news that will launch in 2024. It is said that the news anchors will be AI-generated and speak various languages for all audiences to understand. It is important to note that there will not actually be anchors speaking but AI avatars that will be told what to say. 

FOX News stated that the Los Angeles news station will have AI-generated news anchors and "digital avatars compiled using doubles of real actors as well as actual human anchors for more important information." 

Check out this video to see how AI will be used for Channel 1.  

The creator of the news station states that as AI has continued to grow, people have become worried about the potential damage that Artificial Intelligence can do. He states that the goal of using AI in news is to inform watchers of important reports in the most efficient way. He states that, "The average person watches 25 minutes of news a night, so that might be 9 or 10 stories." (FOX) He continues to state that with the use of AI to generate 500 reports, they can choose the right 9 or 10 specifically for what they are looking for in their allotted time.  

What are people saying about this new AI phenomenon? 

User opinions on the AI news station vary in terms of how this news station will affect society as a whole. While some express excitement about the technological advancement, stating comments such as "Wow. This is really a big step in the usage of Artificial Intelligence," others raise concerns. For instance, one user finds the AI-generated news "Cold. Flat. Soulless," emphasizing the need for human connection regarding news reporting.  

Another user is critical of the customization feature, fearing it may lead to echo chambers and a lack of exposure to diverse perspectives. One user even goes as far as calling it "evil and manipulative." Another commenter references a movie, "Looker" (1981) by Michael Crichton, 

Some users stated that the AI-generated news anchors are unrealistic and that hand movements are weird and unnatural. Some stated their concerns about the biases of information received, stating that "there is no morality here; the creators will tell us anything they want. Other users commented that AI would take over all our jobs. 

One of the biggest concerns is the question of how we can trust AI to select what news to watch. For example, it may show us news only for one of five wars in the world and only one side of the fighting. If this is done repeatedly for prolonged times, we may start thinking there is only one war in the world, and there is only one correct side to it. Overall, the selection of content by AI is one of the most concerning aspects when it comes to the news channel. 

Overall, introducing an AI-driven news station, Channel 1, has sparked a range of user reactions. While some are fascinated by the technological advancements and efficiency promised by AI-generated news anchors, others express reservations. Concerns about the potential lack of human connection and the choice of shared content are prevalent and might be the most concerning factor. 

As society prepares for the integration of AI into news reports, debates surrounding job displacement and the overall impact on societal well-being, illuminate the complexity of this phenomenon. Ultimately, as these opinions are divided, they essentially reflect a mix of optimism, skepticism, and apprehension about the transformative role of AI in shaping the future of news consumption. 

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