BuzzFeed has started publishing AI-generated travel guides, as reported by Futurism, as part of its move towards AI-written content. The publisher’s earlier AI-generated articles were ad-lib quizzes that were mostly harmless, but the travel guides seem to be a bolder attempt to attract search traffic for various destinations.
You can see the full list of travel articles from BuzzFeed’s “Buzzy” AI tool. Currently, there are 44 posts covering destinations like Morocco, Stockholm, Cape May, New Jersey, etc. The articles are “written with the help of Buzzy the Robot but powered by human ideas,” BuzzFeed says on Buzzy’s profile. The top of each story includes a line noting that an article was “collaboratively written” by a human and Buzzy.
For the travel articles, it seems that Buzzy the robot and its human editors have a few writing crutches. As observed by Futurism, many of the articles include some common phrases.
According to Futurism, many of the articles written with the help of Buzzy start with the phrase “now, I know what you’re thinking,” followed by a question about the place.
Moreover, Futurism also discovered that Buzzy uses the expression “hidden gem” in almost all of its content.
According to BuzzFeed spokesperson Juliana Clifton, The people who worked on the travel articles weren’t BuzzFeed’s editorial staff but were actual employees from the company’s business and sales teams. This is because the first batch of travel articles was created with the help of non-editorial BuzzFeed workers.
In the future, BuzzFeed’s AI tools could be used to assist in writing articles based on reader submissions, similar to the “Add Yours” format.
“We are testing new formats that enable anyone, regardless of whether they have a formal writing or content creation background, to contribute their ideas and unique perspectives to our site,” Clifton said.
He further mentioned that human editors are involved, and as the company continues to develop its AI-assisted formats, there will be “built-in methods for humans to be part of the process” as collaborators and editors.
Currently, the AI-generated travel articles by BuzzFeed are not of high quality. Although they have attractive photos and general tips about the places, they lack the necessary information to plan a complete trip.