AI bot trained with 4chan content turned into a 'hate speech machine'

The AI bot GPT-4chan was created by YouTuber Yannic Kilcher and allowed to run rampant on 4chan for a day in an 'unethical' prank.

Published Wed, Jun 8 2022 5:25 AM CDT   |   Updated Thu, Jun 30 2022 6:11 AM CDT

The artificial intelligence (AI) bot was trained by YouTuber Yannic Kilcher using content from 4chan.

Kilcher dubbed his bot GPT-4chan, referencing the successor to the GPT-3 language model developed by Open AI that uses deep learning to generate text. Kilcher's bot was trained on 3.3 million threads from /pol/, the "Politically Incorrect" imageboard on 4chan for political discussion. As a result, he has created "the most horrible model on the internet."

"The model was good in a terrible sense. It perfectly encapsulated the mix of offensiveness, nihilism, trolling, and deep distrust of any information whatsoever that permeates most posts on /pol/," Kilcher said in his video on the project.

Kilcher ran nine instances of the bot and allowed them to post for a full 24 hours on /pol/, resulting in approximately a cumulative 15,000 posts, making up over ten percent of all posts made that day on the imageboard. Lauren Oakden-Rayner from the Royal Adelaide Hospital and the Australian Institute for Machine Learning took to Twitter to describe the prank as unethical after it "posted over 30k vile comments online."

"Open science and software are wonderful principles but must be balanced against potential harm. Medical research has a strong ethics culture because we have an awful history of causing harm to people, usually from disempowered groups ... he performed human experiments without informing users, without consent or oversight. This breaches every principle of human research ethics," said Oakden-Rayner.

For more information on this story, check out this article.

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Adam grew up watching his dad play Turok 2 and Age of Empires on a PC in his computer room, and learned a love for video games through him. Adam was always working with computers, which helped build his natural affinity for working with them, leading to him building his own at 14, after taking apart and tinkering with other old computers and tech lying around. Adam has always been very interested in STEM subjects, and is always trying to learn more about the world and the way it works.

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