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Google is exploring artificial intelligence tools for journalists, in talks with publishers

July 19 (Reuters) – Google is exploring using artificial intelligence tools to write news articles and is in talks with news organizations to use the tools to help journalists, a company spokesperson said late on Wednesday.

The spokesperson did not name the publishers, but the New York Times mentioned that Google has had discussions with The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal owner News Corp. (NWSA.O) and even the New York Times, among others.

A Google spokesperson said these AI tools could help journalists choose headlines or different writing styles, for example, in a way that “enhances their work and productivity,” adding that it was in the “early stages of exploring ideas.”

“Quite simply, these tools are not intended, and cannot, replace the primary role journalists play in reporting, preparing and verifying their articles,” the spokesperson said.

The New York Times said some executives who saw Google’s offer described it as troubling, adding that the executives asked not to be identified. The AI ​​tool being rolled out is called Genesis internally at Google, the New York Times said, citing people familiar with the matter.

A News Corp spokesperson declined to comment on the New York Times report or the AI ​​tool, but said, “We have an excellent relationship with Google, and we appreciate (Google CEO) Sundar Pichai’s long-term commitment to journalism.”

The New York Times and The Washington Post did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment outside normal business hours.

The news comes days after the Associated Press announced that it would partner with ChatGPT owner OpenAI to explore the use of generative AI in news, a deal that could set a precedent for similar partnerships between industries.

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Some outlets already use generative AI for their content, but news publications have been slow to adopt the technology due to concerns about its tendency to generate factually incorrect information, as well as challenges in distinguishing between human-produced content and computer software.

Additional reporting by Urvi Duggar and Rishabh Jaiswal in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza

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