Striking screen writers and WGA members walk the picket line at Fox Studios in Los Angeles on Monday, May 8, 2023. (Photo by Axel Koester, Contributing Photographer) For the past few weeks the Writer's Guild of America has been on strike, and one category of their demands stands out among the rest: barring AI from the writers' room. It's easy to see where they're coming from. Who can fault them for trying to protect writers' jobs? But yielding to this demand could mean missing out an opportunity to make a leap forward in the creative arts, where AI takes over the drudgery of the formulaic work, freeing up human writers to focus on doing what only humans can do: providing new insight into the human experience, and telling impactful, meaningful, relevant stories. The WGA's demands stipulate that AI must be barred from writing literary material where the WGA is involved; that AI cannot be used for source material; and that WGA writing cannot be used to train any AI. This is not the first time we've seen a group try to slam the brakes on AI, and it certainly won't be the last. As AI technology continues to evolve, we will certainly see many jobs eliminated and created. Change is inevitable. But in the case of creative writing, will this change really be a bad thing? A lot of creative writing involves re-formatting and re-imagining old themes and stories. Who's ready for another soulless live-action take on a beloved Disney movie that adds little to the story and takes away plenty? If we let AI take over these re-formatting projects and tasks, it would allow human writers to focus on writing relevant, insightful content. Yes, this will involve eliminating many creative writing jobs, but it could be a great thing for the creative arts. If that sounds unsympathetic, you should know I myself am the despondent owner of a BA in technical writing that's growing more useless with every minute that AI exists. People's livelihood and welfare are a serious matter. Whether they are midwestern factory employees, or white […]
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