Should we fear ChatGPT?

Elena Davidson, CEO at Liberty Communications, discusses how Chat GPT will impact PR.

artificial intelligence

Chatbots and artificial intelligence (AI) have become integral parts of our lives. Their impact is being felt across a wide variety of industries, including public relations. But will such AI technology like ChatGPT spell the end of the PR industry as we know it will it instead be used as a prompt to evolve and grow?

In this article, we’ll cast a spotlight on ChatGPT and the potential it has to shape the PR industry.

So first things first, what really is ChatGPT and how does it work?

Put simply, ChatGPT is a chatbot powered by AI. Think of an Alexa – but the next level up. You can ask it to write you a legal letter, compile a board report or do your Maths homework for you – and what it produces is shockingly good! Its answers are coherent, convincing and fluent and it was described by the Financial Times as “clever and dangerously creative.” In fact, within a mere five days of launch, ChatGPT had gained over 1 million users – something Netflix worked hard to achieve in over three years!

Given this context, many have been fascinated (and also a little frightened) by its capacity to disrupt the status quo so the question many have been asking is will it really steal our jobs?

ChatGPT: Fear

ChatGPT is trained on a huge amount of internet data, including online conversations, articles, and books, which allows it to generate responses that are often eerily similar to those of a real person. So, given the fact that writing is still one of the most prevalent required skills for any PR professional, of any level of seniority or experience, should we be concerned?

Maybe – but the choice is yours. ChatGPT relies on data that has already been formed and doesn’t have the capacity to generate fresh, new ideas so here is where we come in. ChatGPT provides us with the opportunity for quick research but for new ideas – well, that requires a human brain.

By its own admission ChatGPT cannot be relied upon in its entirety. As it states about itself: “ChatGPT is a highly advanced language model developed by OpenAI, but it is still an AI model and not a human. Its answers are based on the patterns it was trained on, so while it can provide accurate and helpful responses, it is not always perfect and may sometimes produce incorrect or unexpected results. It’s always a good idea to verify the information provided by ChatGPT with other sources before making any important decisions.”

In fact – recent research found that advanced AI systems like ChatGPT are “at the most basic level – about as smart as a pigeon.”

Thank goodness – we’re safe then!

ChatGPT: Cheer

The power of AI is not in its ability to steal jobs but rather in the potential it has to reinvent the way we work.

Whether it is in its ability to save people time or in the questions it has prompted us to discuss, the power of AI lies in its ability to spur change.

Just like the internet did in the 1980s, ChatGPT has given us a sense of what is to come and for me, it shouldn’t be feared.

ChatGPT can’t replace the face to face relationships that business is built on but tools like ChatGPT can instead free us from mundane tasks to allow us to spend more time connecting with people, building trust, improving customer satisfaction and perhaps the most important of all – offering advice, counsel and creativity.

We can also use tools like ChatGPT to measure the success of campaigns. We can use it to work more efficiently, leveraging its natural language processing capabilities to analyse large volumes of data and identify relevant mentions much more quickly than we would be able to do manually.

In Summary

ChatGPT has the power to revolutionise the PR industry, bringing about a number of benefits for us all. From improved customer engagement to enhanced media monitoring, ChatGPT can streamline processes and help us achieve our goals more efficiently.

However, it is important to also be cautious and remember that some things are still uniquely human. ChatGPT is never going to replace the human brain and as much as ChatGPT may churn out some pretty insightful information, it still needs a human touch.

We should use it sensibly. Harness its benefits but realise its limitations. We should see it as an opportunity to pivot how we work. We can certainly reap the rewards but we need to look at it as an opportunity to change for the better rather than look back to the past. Done well, ChatGPT will work incredibly well in tandem with PR teams – but to do that we need to stop worrying that it will replace them.

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