DM2023: Artificial intelligence

  • 28 Apr 2023

Delegates discussed the impact of AI on journalism.

Tim Dawson spoke on behalf of the National Executive Council and moved a timely motion which discissed the ethical issues and threats to journalist's jobs posed by developments in artificial intelligence (AI).

He recognised the TUC's Artificial Intelligence working group and said “our concerns go to how images may be generated and who would own those images.”  He said said the potential implications for the NUJ were enormous.

The motion noted the rapid growth of monthly users of ChatGPT - 100million users from November 2022 to January 2023. Development of Artificial Intelligence is driven by private corporations with limited oversight and there are ethical concerns accompanied by a risk in the decline of public trust in the media.

DM instructed the NEC to campaign to educate on the risks and challenges of AI, demand employers do not use AI in staff surveillance, monitoring, work allocation or appraisal without explicit collective agreement and transparency.

The motion noted “the use of AI to replace parts of creative processes has a wider financial impact that risks individual livelihoods and a vibrant creative sector”, with visual creators such as photographers, videographers, illustrators and cartoonists being potentially affected. It supported the need for a Royal Commission to consider the regulation of AI.

Conference agreed NEC would continue supporting the TUC’s AI group and also build collaborative relationships with news platforms and creative organisations in the UK and Ireland already promoting the ethical use of AI.

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