Can an Algorithm Write a Better News Story Than A Reporter?

Narrative Science’s mantra: “We Transform Data into Stories and Insights.” It sounds simple enough.  But many writers are questioning the ethics behind the intentions of a company that trains computers to write news stores.  It comes down to this, can  algorithms become better at telling stories than journalists and should we even let them try?

The Wired article had this perspective on the company:

Had Narrative Science — a company that trains computers to write news stories—created this piece, it probably would not mention that the company’s Chicago headquarters lie only a long baseball toss from the Tribune newspaper building. Nor would it dwell on the fact that this potentially job-killing technology was incubated in part at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications. Those ironies are obvious to a human. But not to a computer.

According to the blog Spin Sucks, the writing (as it were) is already on the wall:

Some niche publications, including Forbes and other media powerhouses (who are remaining private), have hired Narrative Science to  write stories.

Who do you want to get your news stories from?  A trusted reporter or a PC?

Posted by:  Danielle Ricks
Social Media Specialist
Campaign Constultation, Inc

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