A note on AI
Updated: Oct 11
When we talk about what the future of publishing will look like, most of the time, people have one of two responses: delight and dread, both citing Chat GTP-3 and similar software as the cause.
The folks who are delighted are often working under the assumption that AI software will make the creation of stories and art more accessible, while the folks who dread it see the problems inherent in outsourcing the act of creation to an algorithm.
We've decided that as a publication focused on what the future should look like, we will not publish AI-generated or AI-assisted creations. When we look to the future, first and foremost we see people from all walks of life thriving. To accomplish this, we have to support people today and for us that means we don't accept work that has an AI component - and we are far from the only speculative fiction market to do so.
In February 2023, Clarkesworld had to close submissions due to an influx of AI-generated work (in direct violation of their guidelines) and have since put out a blog post clarifying their stance as strictly against AI-generated and AI-assisted work. One of the things they touch on is how to determine what is AI-generated or -assisted.
There are, naturally, programs that are designed to tell you if something is 100% human made or if it is the work of AI programs, but it's been proven time and time again that those programs are flawed. They mark things that people have written themselves as being highly likely to be from an algorithm, while they give passes to things that are definitely AI-generated. There's also the concern that being a trained algorithm and not a human evaluating a piece of writing or artwork, the dataset that the program was trained on may be biased towards or against certain words or phrases that aren't common in Standard American English, thus further marginalizing folks who don't use that dialect.
Ultimately, we aren't so much anti-AI as we are pro-people. We want a people-powered future for everyone, which means that we want content created and edited by people, not algorithms or AI. We'd like to envision a future in which people can create things without worrying about how they're going to make rent this month - and that means paying people fairly and supporting people every step of the way.
AI may find a place in the world or in the future, but when it does, it should find its own niche in the world and not take away from human beings. In the meantime, we're going to continue to support the work that humans do every step of the way.
Submissions for Issue 1 are still open until October 6th, 2023! We're still looking for prose pieces inspired by our cover art and by Al Hess's illustration, a movie poster for Unbreakable Butch, political cartoons or comics, and fake advertisements. Click here for submission guidelines and instructions!