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Council of Europe Adopts Guidelines for Ethical AI Use in Journalism

AI The Council of Europe's Intergovernmental Steering Committee on Media and the Information Society has formally adopted groundbreaking guidelines for the responsible integration of artificial intelligence (AI) systems in journalistic practices. This significant development, announced on December 29, marks a pivotal step towards fostering a rule of law-based and human rights-compliant public communication sector.Originally released
The Council of Europe’s Intergovernmental Steering Committee on Media and the Information Society has formally adopted groundbreaking guidelines for the responsible integration of artificial intelligence (AI) systems in journalistic practices. This significant development, announced on December 29, marks a pivotal step towards fostering a rule of law-based and human rights-compliant public communication sector.

Originally released on November 30, these guidelines are hailed as a crucial contribution to the ethical use of AI in journalism. They provide practical direction not only to news media organizations but also extend guidance to states, technology providers, and digital platforms involved in disseminating news. The guidelines comprehensively address various stages of journalistic production impacted by AI, ranging from the initial decision to incorporate AI to the integration of AI tools into newsrooms.

A notable aspect of the guidelines is their emphasis on the impact of AI on audiences and society. Consequently, they propose a set of responsibilities to be shouldered by technology providers, platforms, and member states to ensure a responsible and ethical use of AI in journalism.

The Council of Europe, headquartered in Strasbourg, France, comprises 46 European countries and is dedicated to promoting democracy, human rights, and the rule of law.

As artificial intelligence gains prominence in public discourse, the field of journalism has witnessed diverse reactions to its integration. On one hand, Channel 1 AI has announced plans to launch an entirely AI-operated newsroom in 2024, offering personalized news to viewers. Similarly, German media giant Axel Springer revealed a mid-December collaboration with OpenAI to integrate ChatGPT into its journalism practices.

Conversely, traditional newsrooms have grappled with challenges such as copyright issues, with some alleging that AI models are unlawfully trained on media companies’ content. The most recent instance is The New York Times’ lawsuit filed on December 27 against OpenAI and Microsoft, accusing them of the misuse of its content in model training.

For an in-depth overview of the significant developments in AI throughout 2023, readers are encouraged to explore our comprehensive “ultimate 2023 AI guide.”

Wasif Shakir

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