2020 has given journalists a lot to report on, but it’s also changed the way journalists function. With the world moving to work from home, and remote living; the pressure on journalists to actively report the happenings across the globe has been as imminent as ever; however, news can’t alway be reported through the comfort of a couch. This has forced journalists to step out onto the field and risk exposure to COVID19 for the sake of daily happenings.

Artificial Intelligence has been explored by journalists time and again, however the current situation has not only brought attention to AI, but also forced journalists to evaluate the future of journalism in respect to AI and automation. Continue reading to see the various ways in which journalism can benefit from the use of AI.

What exactly is AI? Will it threaten human jobs?

With the advancements in technology the world we live in is hyper connected, and keeping up with the latest on goings across the globe while maintaining credibility is one of the biggest challenges faced by journalists worldwide.

Artificial Intelligence refers to using machine learning, smart technology that learns from data and is capable of understanding data in a way that enables it to provide suggestions, and detect fallacies.

Artificial Intelligence won’t be replacing jobs, instead it will be taking over a lot of the time consuming tasks, allowing media houses to focus on more important news pieces, like features, opinion pieces, etc.

3 Ways Journalists Can Benefit From AI

  • Analyzing big data: One of the biggest issues in news is the amount of data at hand. One story can carry on for months and have multiple beats covering the updates and changes in these stories can be extremely time consuming. AI can help in scanning through big data and making suggestions/predictions based on the past. This can be extremely helpful for covering sports and financial news pieces. Bloomberg and Associated Press are using AI technology to get alerts and summaries.
  • Detecting fake news: The internet is an area for free speech, and while this is mostly a boon, one of the biggest drawbacks is the outpouring of fake news. Fake news spreads like wildfire, and anyone that’s been on WhatsApp long enough has probably experienced it firsthand in the form of “news forwards” that turn out to be entirely baseless. AI can help in identifying real news by tracing it to its sources and help reduce the risk of misinformation.
  • Detecting plagiarism: Most media houses circulate the same story by offering their own twist or outlook on it. However blatantly copying another journalist's story and re-publishing it under your name is illegal. AI can help journalists scan their work and identify if any of their content has been plagiarised from other sources, allowing them to correct this matter internally, avoiding the implications that come with posting plagiarised content.

To sum it all up, AI can take over and do the heavy lifting for a lot of human tasks, however it can’t fully replace humans as journalists, as readers want more than just a compilation of facts. Readers want the human touch of opinions, and compelling storytelling to accompany their news which can in turn benefit with the effective use of AI.

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