Tim Kreider on AI

“By now, pretty much any idle dystopian daydream you care to entertain is already in beta; an AI called ‘Jasper’ can generate writing for emails, ad copy, blog posts—you just enter in your company/product name, a description, and ‘tone of voice’ (e.g., one demo is an ad for a fitness class written in the prose style of Hulk Hogan). Of course there’s a difference between craft and artistry; this is all basic information-delivery prose, and I suppose it’s no tragedy that people who hate writing are freed up from the chore, the same way mathematical illiterates like me get to use a calculator. […]

This would all be awesome if, as in some midcentury science fiction story, it freed us all up to live lives of leisurely overconsumption and pursue our real interests; instead, this being America, we’re fucked—including those of us lucky enough that our real interests were our jobs. And note that quite a lot of geniuses have paid the rent and supported their real art with capable hackwork. Ted Chiang, one of the greatest living sf writers, recently dismissed the threat of AI in a Q&A: ‘We are nowhere near having real AI. What we call AI is just a tool of capitalism. I don’t fear AI; I fear capitalism.'”

— Tim Kreider (via)