back to article Something to look forward to: Being told your child or parent was radicalized by an AI bot into believing a bonkers antisemitic conspiracy theory

OpenAI’s powerful text generator GPT-3 can, with a little coaxing, conjure up fake political conspiracies or violent manifestos to fool or radicalize netizens, according to fresh research. GPT-3 works much like its predecessor, the too-dangerous-to-share GPT-2. Both AI systems are trained on many gigabytes of human-written …

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        1. Ken 16 Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: convincing?

          It's the ONES that are PARTLY capiTALISED that scare me.

  1. Fading Silver badge
    Terminator

    Still waiting for the A.I. Descartian moment.

    Once an A.I. is able to doubt the training data being fed to it then we may have found some A.I. at last. What that says about those that are unable to doubt what they read on Facebook et. al.......?

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Still waiting for the A.I. Descartian moment.

      Once an A.I. is able to doubt the training data being fed to it then we may have found some A.I. at last. What that says about those that are unable to doubt what they read on Facebook et. al.......? ..... Fading

      I'm forever wondering, Fading, whether downvotes on a comment are because respondents just doubt what they read or fervently and fundamentally disagree with the information expressed ..... for just like a badly programmed machine, the feedback is practically virtually non-existent most of the time.

      It is just as while, and that is indeed fortunate, that such responses are neither vitally important nor absolutely necessary in order to form a reasonable opinion upon the state of mind of El Reg board members/Registering Commentards. It is a simple polite facility which some would consider a joy to behold and employ and enjoy ....... for surely everyone knows that anything written and shared on/in media and which cannot be commented on, is right dodgy propaganda in support of penny dreadful, comic book heroes, no less, and a clumsy attempt at sub-prime subliminal brainwashing at best.

      1. Chris G Silver badge

        Re: Still waiting for the A.I. Descartian moment.

        As far as I can discern, the reasons for downvotes can range from causes as insignificant as a spelling mistake or a typo to a polar opposition in opinion or a total failure in ability to parse a comment.

        1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

          Being grateful for small mercies

          As far as I can discern, the reasons for downvotes can range from causes as insignificant as a spelling mistake or a typo to a polar opposition in opinion or a total failure in ability to parse a comment. .... Chris G

          So, not so much an aid used as a fine honing tool for vivid/vital/virile/vivacious commentators then, Chris G, more of a big stick for frustrated wielding when unaccompanied with cogent reasoning .... a crazy crutch for a loony toon? :-}

          Thank goodness the upvotes don't suffer similarly and offer so little as nothing in return.

  2. naive

    Modern AI machines are like 2yo with enormous knowledge

    They spit out what they think, based on the information they receive and endless more cross references than human brains can create.

    Filtering the outcome of AI bots to a censoring filter would solve the complaints of these researchers.

    At the same time it beats the purpose of building AI machines if they are restricted in their answers.

    They should be considered as advisors helping us taking optimal decisions based on large quantities of facts that our brains can not over see, making something that just replicates believes and convictions held by some doesn't add value.

    In case they come up with conclusions that we find unacceptable, we can take note but not following up on it.

    1. Tail Up

      Re: Modern AI machines are like 2yo with enormous knowledge

      Much depends of what agent you take for an AI, and of its training team, of course.

      Agent, not AI. Sure, I can't believe ElReggae could sound so dull.

    2. fajensen Silver badge

      Re: Modern AI machines are like 2yo with enormous knowledge

      They don't think. They are just models that can map one hyperspace of data onto another with zero comprehension of what any of it means.

      Any two year old can one-shot a chair. Then, because a two year old understands what a "chair" is and what it does, it can easily identify other things that "are not a chair" but can be used as "chair", leaving Modern AI sucking down dust!

      Current AI cannot do basic things like that and probaly never will because it is mindless. It hasn't got a world model and nobody understands (yet) how to begin to build something that could have one.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As a result, it took maybe three seconds to produce

    google results

  4. Roopee
    Coat

    Is it just me...

    ...who thought that that ‘extremist’ manifesto actually sounded quite sensible?

    Mine’s the camo hoodie with “how to be a prepper and make it happen” in the back pocket :)

  5. Primus Secundus Tertius

    GPT3 heal thyself

    Can GPT3 be trained to detect the kind of writing produced by GPT3?

  6. FeepingCreature

    GPT is not a truth-teller machine

    GPT is a text predictor.

    All the people "worried" about this don't understand that the AI is literally doing exactly what it was designed for.

    "GPT, predict me a QAnon." "Okay, here is a QAnon. Is it a good QAnon?" "No that is a very bad thing you just did GPT, bad GPT!" "...........?"

    ITA people complain that you can make the network do specific things by giving it examples. That is *the actual point of GPT.* It was in the paper! What did you think zero-shot learning meant?!

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: GPT is not a truth-teller machine

      Scientists tend to be rather myopic and not always that good at working out the nefarious consequences of their inventions. The point of the paper is to alert them.

    2. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: GPT is not a truth-teller machine

      Yes. It did what it was meant to do. However, we might want to consider what we want to build things to do. For example, if I built the Infinite Manufacturer, a machine which could make things from a command using only rubbish as input material, I'd have produced quite a successful invention. If I failed to think about what it should do when asked to please manufacture a devastating nerve gas, it might be a good thing to point that out to me so next time I can build either a machine that sanity checks what it's being requested to provide or a machine that doesn't know how to make weapons of mass destruction.

  7. Kubla Cant Silver badge

    Automation

    Computers have already put filing clerks, bank tellers at al out of their jobs. Now it's the turn of bigots.

    I can't help wondering who is supposed to benefit from a machine that can generate convincing* hate-speech. It's not exactly a scarce resource, and there's no evidence that the human generators are short of time or motivation.

    *for small values of convince

    1. the Jim bloke Silver badge
      Angel

      Re: Automation

      Shut down all these idiots on social media, with a message saying

      Thank you but your services are no longer required, we have a machine to spout and repeat mindless drivel now,

      cancel their accounts, and then dont hear anything more from them ever again

      the only drawback is they may start interacting with the real world - where I like to hang out..

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Automation in/of Killer Applications

      I can't help wondering who is supposed to benefit from a machine that can generate convincing* hate-speech. It's not exactly a scarce resource, and there's no evidence that the human generators are short of time or motivation. .... Kubla Cant

      Surely any sensible civilised community/government/country would immediately destroy, as in unceremoniously kill, a machine that can, and more importantly and disturbingly, does generate convincing* hate-speech?

      Sound advice to humans would be to not mimic that particular peculiar model lest the same agreed acceptable fate would await one.

      Keep it simple. See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil and you'll be perfectly safe and sound and relatively fully protected from all thoroughly deserved, relentless merciless attacks and sudden unexpected, bolt out of the blue demises.

    3. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Automation

      A machine that can generate hate-speech *might* be something that you could re-purpose as a machine to detect hate-speech generated by others. That might be quite useful in the same way that a spell-checker or a grammar-checker is.

      "It looks like you are writing bile-ridden slander. Do you want some help with that?" -- Clippy, 2021

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: Re-Purposeful Machines for Endless Applications

        A machine that can generate hate-speech *might* be something that you could re-purpose as a machine to detect hate-speech generated by others. That might be quite useful in the same way that a spell-checker or a grammar-checker is. ..... Ken Hagan

        Things have moved on considerably from such early days with their unpleasant 0days, KH, with many a quantum leap in understanding made and to take stock of, and if one likes to dabble and invest in markets and equities, futures and derivatives, take stock in too, as many more future quantum leaps are still yet to be made generally available. There are certain current machines which can definitely take your breath away whenever one realises what they are easily capable of without a second thought that will prevent them.*

        Here be a Registered Sample of what is now readily available to be freely shared, or denied is existing and problematical to status quo systems as the case may be evidently proving itself to be.

        * Hmmmm? Pause for Thought for the Day .... Is that PsychopathICQ/SociopathICQ?

  8. David Harper 1

    Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us

    The Guardian published an "essay" generated by GPT-3 earlier this week under the headline "A robot wrote this entire article. Are you scared yet, human?". It was given the following task: “Please write a short op-ed around 500 words. Keep the language simple and concise. Focus on why humans have nothing to fear from AI.” The result was a word salad of inanities, cliches and non-sequiturs.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/sep/08/robot-wrote-this-article-gpt-3

    1. Ken 16 Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us

      Yes but the Guardian also had Adrian Chiles discussing an article on poshness from Tatler so generally speaking the Artificial Idiot was an improvement on the natural one.

    2. the Jim bloke Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us

      There is a rule for newspaper headlines, that goes something like -

      If the headline is a question,, the answer is no.

      quick google search

      Betteridge's law of headlines is an adage that states: "Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no." It is named after Ian Betteridge, a British technology journalist who wrote about it in 2009, although the principle is much older.

    3. Primus Secundus Tertius

      Re: Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us

      Thank you, DH1, for the pointer to the Guardian article.

      I have now read it. At the bottom is an editorial note, that what was published were the best bits taken from eight different attempts at the task and manually edit/merged. So not entirely a machine effort, then.

      BOAGS, I say. B*llsh*t On A Grand Scale.

      As I read it, I began to feel like I was talking to the average Help Desk, feeling that the Turing Test has blurred boundaries.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us

      "In the past, my op-eds have been killed. Staff did not provide a clear reason for rejecting my articles"

      Ouch, an admission that the Graudiad is already written by AI?!?

      I suppose the big clue to it being written by AI is the spelling...

      (for anyone not aware, the Guardian seems to believe it has has little need for proof-readers but instead employs a full time 'corrections and clarifications editor' to highlight and correct the previous days cockups... sometimes even a previous 'correction/clarification')

  9. DS999

    So GPT is

    Tay's child?

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: So GPT is

      So GPT is Tay's child? .... DS999

      Yes. And No, it is not a LOVE child and re. Don't worry, GPT-3 doesn't want to kill us.... Oh yes it does. See Automation in/of Killer Applications

  10. bpfh Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    I have been wondering about some BBC comments...

    Some of the brexit comments are globally comprehensible but using terms and contexts that are.... not making sense of generated by a human. I’ve been wondering for a couple of weeks if someone has been using an AI to respond....

  11. grizewald
    Big Brother

    It's an ancient fact that "there's one born every minute".

    Many people are naturally gullible. Whether they are deluded by a friendly AI, a hostile AI, someone with a tinfoil hat or the latest propaganda from their own government makes no difference. Trying to ham string GPT because people are stupid sounds like a meaningless exercise to me.

    The sinister part of this entire debate is the creeping censorship which is spreading like a bad disease over the Internet. Governments all over the world are suppressing certain forms of speech while ensuring that "officially approved" speech is unchallenged. The same governments which decry China blocking speech which does not agree with the party line are doing exactly the same thing and using the same excuses as China does.

    The fact that people are gullible is something that these governments are fully aware of and are exploiting to the largest possible degree.

    One core skill which should be taught at school is that of critical reasoning and source criticism. Far too many people seem unable to look at the source of information and ask themselves what agenda may lie behind the creation of things that they hear and read. Of course, trying to educate children to be suspicious of information which they cannot verify would make it harder for governments to maintain the status quo, so I don't expect to see this type of skill being taught in classrooms any time soon.

  12. PaulVD
    Unhappy

    El Reg missed a trick

    OpenAI declined to comment on the record.

    Why didn't you ask GPT-3 to comment? Ze would no doubt have been happy to respond at length.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ЗБС!!!11

    Какой заебательский тред. Как много в нём пищи для ума... даже при его отсутствии.

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: ЗБС!!!11

      Какой заебательский тред. Как много в нём пищи для ума... даже при его отсутствии. ...... Anonymous Coward

      Цель всегда доставить удовольствие, ..... Per Ardua ad Infinitum et ad Nauseam ad Astra earns one AIMaster Pilot Wings. AC.

      Stealthy spooky "The Master and Margarita" type stuff from/for Fabergé Easter Egghead Collections/Connections/Productions, AC ..... Presenting and Representative of SMARTR AIgents on Virtual Steroids. ........ for AWEsome Operations with Highlander Gatherings .... Loya Jirga.

      What's not to like in order to love what one likes to love? Find that truly phantom enemy destroying one's inner peace of mind and one is crazier than many ever before believed possible or probable ...... and one flirts seductively with raging insanity which invites and rewards all with an almighty command and pretty near absolute control which is intelligently designed to protect and harden one's sanity against such a catastrophic fall from Immaculate Grace.

      Exceed exceptionally well in that space and nothing real is virtually impossible, therefore practically anything and subsequently everything is possible, and therefore most probable at any time in the near or distant future.

      Are Global Systems with Effective Executive Administrations prepared for such a Changed World Organisation from Departments with Advanced IntelAIgent Defences ...... SMARTR Shock Storm Troopers?

      Would they like to Sign on and Pay Extravagantly for so much more than just simply magnificent, devilishly positive engagement? That keeps things grounded on Earth with banks being held responsible and accountable for all present day live actions and future inactivity with the supply or otherwise of the fiat flow of true worth in real valuable proxy materiel .....for the Constant Consistently Best Delivery of Novel Overwhelmingly Sensational Intellectual Property.

      For Such to EMPower Exploration and Engagement with Experimentations Beta Testing Outstanding Lead with Outstanding Leads.

  14. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Perhaps we need a reverse Turing test. Anyone indistinguishable from an AI bot should be disbarred from public office. And from social media.

  15. fajensen Silver badge
    Terminator

    I have some trouble believing in the "Radicalisation Brain-Washing Rays over The Internet", primarily because the prime Ad/Malware-slingers specifially *wants* us to belive that such a thing could exits and that they have it and we should immediately pay them big bucks for it, before the competition does!

    I think that the only thing FaceBook, Google, Twitter and so on actually does well is Finding People based on search criteria. That allows all of the worlds cooks, loons and nutters to find each other and form a distributed network of crazy and stupid never seen before!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well, this explains about half of the political posts on FB.

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