Microsoft has published a garbled AI article calling a tragically deceased NBA player “useless.”

Former NBA player Brandon Hunter died unexpectedly this week at age 42, a tragedy that left fans of his 2000s career with the Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic reeling.

But a seamless turnaround on what was otherwise a lackluster news release from Microsoft MSN The news portal published a distorted, seemingly AI-generated article that mocked Hunter as “useless” in its headline.

“Brandon Hunter useless at 42,” read the article, which was quickly called out on social media. The rest of the brief report is even more mysterious, informing readers that Hunter “transferred” after having “significant success as a forward (sic) for the Bobcats” and “achieving in 67 video games.”

Condemnation of the disrespectful article was swift and forceful.

“AI shouldn’t write obituaries,” one reader posted. “Pay your writers MSN.”

“The most dystopian part of this is that the AI ​​that replaces us will be as vague and stupid as this translation,” one Redditor wrote, “but it’s good enough for money men.”

This isn’t the first time Microsoft, a major backer of ChatGPT maker OpenAI, has embarrassed itself with AI-generated content. MSN. For example, it made headlines last month after publishing a similarly incoherent AI-generated travel guide for Ottawa, Canada, which oddly recommended that tourists visit a local food bank. Deleted that weird article after criticism.

Microsoft senior director Jeff Jones claims, “This article was not published by an unsupervised AI.” edges At the time “in this case, the content is generated through a combination of algorithmic techniques with human review, not a large language model or AI system.”

The whole story is that in 2020, MSN It fired a team of human journalists responsible for vetting content published on its platform. As a result, as we reported last year, the platform syndicated a large number of slanted articles about dubious Bigfoot and mermaids, which we deleted after we pointed them out.

You can expect these repeats to embarrass themselves MSN To increase scrutiny of content shared with its vast audience.

“We are working to ensure that this type of content is not posted in the future,” Jones said edges last month.

Yet they do not see success. MSN Its “About Us” page promises that it ensures “the content we show aligns with our values” through “human oversight.” But looking at some of the content being published on his site, those claims strain credibility.

Take the original publisher of the piece on Hunter’s death, a publication that goes by the same name race route Red flags abound, starting with the fact that his articles are only bylined by an anonymous “editor.” The publication claims to make the “essence of sporting excellence” “your premier destination for all major sporting news” – and although it is linked to a Portuguese-language automotive magazine Autogear in his MSN A profile, that site’s “About Us” page is filled entirely with Lorem ipsum text, a placeholder verb commonly used by web designers.

In the last 12 hours, the website has apparently been taken down and presents visitors with a login page.

And despite nearly 100,000 followers on Facebook, the site’s content gets almost zero engagement there.

Most obviously, a quick overview race route‘s profile shows that it is using MSN To publish an uninterrupted stream of incoherent gobbledygook. One particularly ludicrous article profiles “Corridor of Fame” football player “Pleasure Taylor,” which appears to be a confused reference to NFL Hall of Famer Joey Taylor.

Another incomprehensible recent piece struck together race route and republished by MSN The story of Kevin Porter Jr.’s arrest for domestic violence misrepresented basic facts, as did the name of the NYU Langone Medical Center, dubbed the “Langone Medical Heart.”

Upon closer examination, the articles are not only of very low quality. As it turns out, they are also stolen.

Take the article about Hunter’s death, structured as a TMZ Sports A story about his death with altered punctuation and a use of synonyms so liberal that the effect is essentially incomprehensible.

Here is the first line TMZWritten by:

On review, edition published by MSN Clearly a choppy remix:

Hunter, initially a highly touted high school basketball player in Cincinnati, achieved significant success as a forward for the Bobcats.

He earned three first-team All-MAC Convention selections and led the NCAA in scoring his senior season. Hunter’s skills led to his selection as the 56th overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft.

We looked everywhere, others race route Article above MSN has been expressly removed from other publishers. The “Pleasure Tailor” item is clearly a garbled version of the blog by Cold wire. A story about potholes in the United Kingdom is a butchered version of a piece Autocar. And the post about tennis star Novak Djokovic has been removed Tennis World.

reached up to MSN with questions, but never heard back. race routeincluding an article about Hunter, are still live.

Needless to say, none of this bodes well for the information ecosystem. As publications look to replace human editors and writers, AI has opened up a barrage of questionably sourced content — sometimes via mainstream news sites. CNET to do The AV Club – which risks further eroding public trust in the media.

Accusing an NBA legend of being “useless” the week of his death is, in other words, not an offensive slip-up by a seemingly unseen algorithm. This is also a threat to the future of journalism.

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