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AI ‘not just a problem-solving tool’ for journalists

  • AI can give them ‘an edge’
  • About enhancement, not replacement
  • Discussion sponsored by AGBI

Journalists must embrace artificial intelligence technologies in their day-to-day work, according to a panel of leading experts during a session hosted by AGBI at the Global Media Congress.

“AI is not just a tool for problem-solving or generating the next stories but it also allows the development of new creative skill sets,” said Professor Neil Maiden, director of the UK’s National Centre for Creativity enabled by AI.

“Journalists need to be creative on how to use these technologies,” he said. “It’s about thinking radically how these technologies can be used. It’s how you put them together to give you an edge.”

Maiden said journalists should not be concerned of the possibility of AI replacing tasks, and that helping people become more creative “is different to the argument of replacing”.

Jessica Groopman, director of digital strategy and innovation at US tech company Intentional Futures, said AI will help drive innovative ways in how news is being delivered. 

“There will be displacement and there will be enhancement. Different technologies that have come before, such as social media, have become a novel way for communication and shifted to ways of how news can be delivered,” she said.

Groopman said that approximately $70 billion had been invested in AI this year, compared to around $400 million in 2018.

“It’s also a race to implement these technologies no matter the size of your company and this really characterises how AI is viewed,” she said.

Noel Tock, founder of digital agency Human Made, added: “AI is not above or below me, it doesn’t serve or dictate my life. It’s a bit of a game of ping-pong on a daily basis between the tasks that I’m trying to do or to achieve – and that is how I get the most of it.”

The AI technology-dominated media: Looming threat or opportunity panel discussion took place on the second day of the Global Media Congress in Abu Dhabi and was organised by AGBI as a gold sponsor of the event. 

The session brought together some of the world’s leading AI experts as they explained how AI has become a catalyst in media and the impact it could have on the industry’s future.

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