It seems Google Search Advocate John Mueller is not a fan of content generated by artificial intelligence, with the last few days seeing him nail his colours to the mast on the debate on social media.
On Sunday, Mueller responded to a question on Twitter regarding the rise of bloggers and search engine optimisation (SEO) specialists using AI tools to create written content, and whether Google’s algorithms were able to tell the difference between text written by people and machines.
Mueller’s response conveyed a weariness of a concept that has, he says “been around since the start of the web”. He hinted that he only sees AI creating “low-quality content”, and ridiculed the idea by sharing a GIF of a mannequin head being rubbed against a keyboard by a robotic arm.
Content generators / spinners have been around since the start of the web. People have used all kinds of tools & tricks to do that (see image). As far as I can tell, most sites have trouble creating higher-quality content, they don't need help creating low-quality content. pic.twitter.com/5Gt7WgEo4t
— 🐐 John 🐐 (@JohnMu) March 20, 2022
On Reddit on Monday, Mueller was more succinct in his condemnation of machine-produced content, replying to a question about whether AI could write good blogs or product reviews with simply a “nope”.
Close analysts of AI-written content will no doubt observe that it is improving, but still seems a long way from achieving the controlled tone and quality of a skilled human writer. Notoriously, an AI tool in 2016 generated a Christmas song that not only sounded poor musically, but also contained lyrics that made little grammatical sense, such as “I have always been there for the rest of our lives”.
Discussing Mueller’s views on AI writing, Search Engine Roundtable’s Barry Schwartz also seems to believe we’re some time away from the day when machine-generated content can be taken seriously, concluding:
“So maybe we need to wait for 2023 or maybe 2033?”
Artificial intelligence will always struggle with anything that involves reasoning and creativity, which is why we value human-created content produced by skilled writers and trained editors, and Google is smart enough to recognise this too. To learn more about content development and how it is a crucial part of SEO, get in touch with the Engage Web team.