After the release of ChatGPT, the floodgates have opened to a whole swathe of generative AI products and services. We are now firmly in the age of AI and it seems as though just about everyone is getting in on the action. Although the rise of generative AI is a very exciting time, it comes with an abundance of questions: Should content creators be concerned for the livelihood of their careers? Will the introduction of AI fundamentally alter the content generation process? What opportunities are available for humanity with access to a technology that revolutionizes our access to information? So with these questions in mind, let’s dive into the opportunities this technology creates and the challenges it will need to solve.
A pressing concern for content creators right now is that generative AI is going to put them out of work. Artificial intelligence doesn’t require a yearly salary, a health insurance and dental package, or retirement benefits — how are we supposed to compete with that?! Luckily, like most product categories, there’s a market for the mass-produced products (like those made by AI) and hand-made custom products (like those made by creators); both markets can coexist without one having to mean the end of the other. For example, users might be happy to get the cut-and-dry information from an AI-generated article reviewing the best route to take when touring Rome by foot, but at the same time, will look for a story with secrets only the locals know — getting the most out of both. It looks like our AI overlords aren’t going to be taking over anytime soon, so instead of having the fear of being usurped by generative AI, creators can actually use it to their advantage. These products can speed up the creative process by providing inspiration for text or visuals to get the ball rolling (think of it like a handy assistant).
Although, not all concerns over AI can be as easily quelled, as new challenges are unfolding everyday while this tech continues to grow. One issue that has been coming up is the legal ownership of AI generated content, as questions over intellectual property have been making their way into the courtroom to brave this uncharted territory. For instance, Getty images, as well as multiple independent artists, have taken AI companies to court over their databases scraping from their works without proper licensing and producing images that are too close to the source material. Then there is the brand-related issue of trying to maintain your brand’s voice and individuality while using AI-generated content. These AI services have only a certain set of precoded inputs to pull from, so it’s a challenge to produce something truly original or that caters to your specific audience, as these cases would require more highly specialized software.
Another major concern is the ease with which misinformation can be generated with AI services; due to the speed at which AI can generate content, people can affect markets and public opinion by flooding the media with skewed content mass produced through AI. The AI could accidentally pull from sources that are inaccurate or outdated, and necessary context can be left out or skipped over. Without the knowledge of the complete sources that are being utilized to provide the AI-generated information, we have to be cautious about taking this content as fact and maybe do some background research to verify its accuracy.
On the bright side, the rise of generative AI also opens the door for a multitude of opportunities for brands and content creators alike. For instance, these products really help smaller agencies and publishers by giving them the ability to compete with the scale of bigger companies and keep with their pace. These resources essentially level the playing field by allowing them to create a larger volume of content than once thought possible. Additionally, AI services like these will significantly speed up the research process by pulling from a wider array of data to provide quick information within a matter of seconds, rather than having to painstakingly hunt for multiple sources across the internet. Furthermore, AI technology is growing in many different languages, and therefore, users will soon be able to create unique content for diverse audiences, allowing the flow of ideas and information to move across countries and dialects in a way that was not possible before.
Overall, generative AI raises a lot of questions for content creators, brands, and society as a whole that we are going to see play out within the coming years. However, these products offer a variety of opportunities to expand business, speed up workflows, and even overcome previously cumbersome obstacles to productivity. At this point, there are AI services for just about everything (images, writing, videos, audio, and coding to name a few), so the opportunities in this field are boundless. Only 6 months into the age of AI, this technology has already significantly changed our lives (primarily, our work lives), and we can only imagine how things will look in the near future.