“This tasteless and misleading article should never have appeared.”
Dismissed from office
Here’s a pro tip for editors: never post an AI-generated “interview” with someone you haven’t actually interviewed, especially if they’ve suffered a life-altering injury.
Anne Hoffmann, longtime editor of the German-language tabloid Current die, learns this lesson the hard way. She was “relieved of her duties”, according to the magazine’s editor, for publishing an AI-generated interview with Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher, who suffered a brain injury following a crash. skiing in 2013 and has not made a public appearance since then.
In the statement, the publisher said it “apologizes to the Schumacher family” after the star’s reps said they planned to file a lawsuit against the tabloid for publishing the interview last week. .
“This tasteless and misleading article should never have appeared,” said Bianca Pohlmann, managing director of FUNKE, in a translation of the statement. “It in no way meets the standards of journalism that we – and our readers – expect from an editor like FUNKE. .”
The ‘interview’ in question appeared under a cover story claiming to be ‘the first interview’ with the F1 legend since his crash, and featured a made-up quote attributed to Schumacher about how his ‘life changed completely’ .
Although the piece mentioned that it was generated by an AI and had no actual quotes from the ex-runner himself, it only did so at the very end of the piece.
As ESPN reports, this was not the first time the Schumacher family had to deal with Current die‘s errors.
Just a year after the racing star’s skiing accident, the magazine featured a photo of Schumacher and his wife Corinna on its cover, alongside a misleading headline that read “Wake up.” The article in question talked about the possibility of someone ‘waking up’ from a coma, but if anyone had just seen the headline and image, they would have thought that Schumacher had in fact made a full recovery.
While this debacle will hopefully serve as a cautionary tale, it looks like this kind of thing will unfortunately become all the more common as AI continues to be rapidly integrated into society.
Learn more about AI rudeness: Fury as Magazine Uses AI to Generate Fake Interview with Michael Schumacher
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