Microsoft fired 70 employees and replaced them with AI. The algorithm will write, select, and oversee the news site.
The Seattle Times and The Guardian reported that Microsoft cut about seventy journalists and replaced them with AI. They worked in the MSN news aggregator and were responsible for selecting, editing, and curating stories. Employees who work full time at Microsoft will remain with the company.
Microsoft noted that they estimate the number of employees and try to automate part of their processes. At the same time, if the result of the AI’s work does not suit them, they can “redeploy” and hire contractors to write and edit news. The company emphasized that job cuts are “not related to the pandemic”.
Media noted that this is one of the first cases when Microsoft publicly fired employees and replaced them with AI. One of the layoffs who spoke to The Guardian feared that the AI might inadvertently violate “strict editorial rules,” such as not removing violent content. However, the measure will allow the company to save tens of thousands of dollars.
Baidu previously introduced Vidpress, a tool that can only create short videos based on short news items. The AI-based algorithm can produce up to a thousand videos per day – the company’s news editors can manually release only 300-500 videos per day. Vidpress creates two-minute videos with a resolution of 720p in two and a half minutes, while it takes people at least 15 minutes to do this.