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If last year’s SXSW was driven by panels and events around Web3, NFTs and the metaverse, this year’s has decidedly cooled on the crypto craze and is instead focused on something entirely different: chatbots.
Though chatbots are by no means new technology, the launch last fall of OpenAI’s ChatGPT has sparked renewed interest in — and anxiety over — the use of AI-powered chatbots across multiple industries, in part because of their growing sophistication. Screenwriters in film and TV have become more wary of the impact ChatGPT could have on the scriptwriting process, given that the chatbot is already capable of churning out short scripts; organizations like the Writers Guild of America West say they are actively monitoring the technology “in the event they require additional protections for writers.”
All of these dynamics will be at play in Austin on March 10, the first day of SXSW, when executives and creatives gather to discuss the ramifications of generative AI. OpenAI’s co-founder and president, Greg Brockman, will participate in a featured discussion to talk about the real-world impact of his company’s generative AI, which also includes the AI-powered digital image creator DALL-E.
Earlier that day, Chris Hyams, CEO of the jobs listing site Indeed, will talk about how AI is disrupting the workplace by replacing some job functions or positions entirely.
On March 12, BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti, who has announced that the digital media company will rely in part on AI-generated content, will join Semafor co-founder Ben Smith to discuss how the technology will affect the next generation of creatives.
Also on March 12, a related conversation about deepfakes and AI-generated imagery — by the likes of OpenAI’s DALL-E — will encourage guardrails around generative media.
This story first appeared in the March 8 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.
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