The potential dark side of AI and GPT-3 writing tools

Hey friends,

I have a backlog of topics I've been meaning to email you about.

But today I did an interview with a journalist from The Information, and it resulted in a cascade of thoughts about AI writing tools, AI content in general, and specifically OpenAI's GPT-3 language model.

Buckle up.

First, some background. A few days ago I tried out Nathan Baschez's new AI-writing assistant called Lex.

I recorded my initial reactions, and (as you'll see) I was pretty enamoured with it:

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Justin Jackson
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@mijustin
October 18th 2022
17
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As a small business owner, I was excited about the possibilities. A tool like Lex could help me write content for Transistor.fm more efficiently. An article that would normally take me 2 hours to write (including procrastination) took 20-40 minutes with Lex.

I didn't really consider the deeper implications of this technology until I saw this tweet:

What happens when people start going to AI for answers instead of Google search and Wikipedia?

How does the AI decide what to suggest?

What are the knock-on effects of these suggestions?

I recorded this quick video to explore some of these questions:

video preview

Aside from the bigger issues with propaganda, there are still potential problems for small businesses.

For example, when I asked the AI to suggest content for "best podcast hosting" it suggested three of my competitors!

For many founders and indie makers, the point of these AI-assisted writing tools is SEO: to rank on Google.

But, if people start skipping Google and just go directly to the AI... will we even need to write all this content?

And... will brands start figuring out how to optimize for AI suggestions?

Instead of hiring "SEO consultants" to help us rank on Google, will we hire "language-model consultants" to help us rank on language models like GPT-3?

Cheers,
Justin Jackson
@mijustin

PS: if this resonated with you please share this tweet or this blog post.

This newsletter is sponsored by ⚡ MegaMaker

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It's been 4 years since we did this

Saturday, July 30, 2022

​ Howdy! ​ Four years ago (2018), Jon Buda and I were in his apartment in Chicago, getting ready to launch a brand new podcast hosting company. Justin Jackson @mijustin After months of hacking on @

Older founders do this better

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​ Howdy! ​ Jon and I didn't start working on our startup, Transistor, together until we were both in our late 30s. When we launched, in August 2018, I had just turned 38, and Jon had just turned 37

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​ Howdy! ​ When Jon and I started Transistor, our primary motivation was to have a better life. We wanted to build something we could be proud of. We were tired of working for other people. We wanted

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