Welcome to The Week in Generative AI, a weekly column for marketers from Quad Insights that quickly sums up need-to-know developments surrounding this rapidly evolving technology.
Breaking news on Nov. 17: Sam Altman to be replaced as OpenAI CEO by Chief Technology Officer Mira Murati
According to the OpenAI blog: “Mr. Altman’s departure follows a deliberative review process by the board, which concluded that he was not consistently candid in his communications with the board, hindering its ability to exercise its responsibilities. The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI.”
OpenAI is the parent company of ChatGPT.
CTO Mira Murati has been at the company for five years and will serve as interim CEO until a permanent replacement is found. The transition will also see Board Chairman Greg Brockman stepping down, but he will “remain in his role at the company, reporting to the CEO.”
YouTube updates AI policies
According to its official blog, YouTube is implementing new AI policies to balance innovation with responsibility. All uploads will require creators to disclose when content is altered or “synthetic,” which is critical in cases “where the content discusses sensitive topics, such as elections, ongoing conflicts and public health crises, or public officials.”
Additionally, YouTube says it will allow users to “request the removal of AI-generated or other synthetic or altered content that simulates an identifiable individual.” The Verge’s Mia Sato and Nilay Patel write that “YouTube is walking quite a tightrope here, as there is no established legal framework for copyright law in the generative AI era — there’s no specific law or court case that says it’s illegal to train an AI system to sing in Taylor Swift’s voice.”
Over at Forbes, Robert Hart reports that YouTube is launching a limited demo of a content-creation tool called Dream Track that will “allow a ‘small group of select U.S. creators’ to generate unique 30-second tracks for use on Shorts, the Google-owned platform’s short-form answer to TikTok.” The launch of this new tool “comes amid escalating tensions between creative sectors and AI firms over the ownership of material produced by generative AIs and the rights of companies to build these models on material.”
Microsoft goes all in on Copilot
Microsoft’s Ignite conference this week (Nov. 14-17) showcased its plan to make Microsoft 365 Copilot a key part of its ecosystem, aiming for a widespread launch in early 2024. Copilot, which was Microsoft’s existing name for the chatbot in Windows 11, will now be the overarching brand for Microsoft’s AI tools across products — which means the Bing Chat brand is going away.
From Dec. 1, Copilot will be generally available, marking a significant expansion in Microsoft’s AI strategy that relies on a partnership with OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT. It’s a delicate balance, as “Microsoft and OpenAI continue to compete for the same customers seeking out AI assistants, and Microsoft is clearly trying to position Copilot as the option for consumers and businesses,” writes Tom Warren in The Verge.
PCWorld’s Mark Hachman reports that users can “expect Copilot to work … in apps like Teams, transcribing and taking notes while a meeting occurs, but also volunteering insights when the meeting wraps up.”
Google Bard opens for teen use
Engadget’s Mariella Moon reports that Google has “given teens in most countries around the world access to its Bard AI chatbot” if they have their language set to English and they meet local minimum age requirements for managing a Google account, typically between 13 to 16 years.
According to Google, this expansion is designed to cater to the educational and informational needs of younger users. Google claims that Bard could provide students with “writing tips for a class president speech, suggestions for what universities to apply to, or ways to learn a new sport like pickleball.”
The company says it has implemented safeguards to ensure content appropriateness for younger users, with Bard supposedly trained to avoid illegal or age-inappropriate content.
Thanks for reading. We’ll see you in December after the holiday.
If you’d like to catch up on prior installments of this column, start by heading to last week’s recap: “The Week in Generative AI: November 10, 2023 edition”