For the past few weeks, ARLnow has been experimenting with an automated email newsletter that’s written almost entirely by AI.
The “ARLnow AM” newsletter sends at 8 a.m. each weekday morning and summarizes that day’s Morning Notes and the past day’s local news articles.
Aside from the headlines, the intro and the article summaries are all written by the GPT-4 generative AI model. Further, the email’s design was mostly coded by GPT-4 and the creation and sending of the email each morning requires no human intervention.
The idea behind the email was to give readers a morning alternative to our venerable Afternoon Update email without needing to use scarce additional staff resources.
The newsletter is admittedly not perfect. Let’s list the ways:
- We’re still working to refine the design. Coding an email newsletter that’s compatible with all email clients is much harder than it sounds.
- Sometimes the AI-written article blurbs miss factual nuances in stories.
- The AI-written intros are, for lack of a better term, corny. They’re also a bit repetitive. We’re trying to figure out ways to improve it.
- At this point, we have not included any local advertising. (According to our polling, at least, the ads from local businesses on ARLnow are seen as a generally positive feature of the site.)
So, the bottom line is that this is experimental and the blurbs should not be entirely relied upon for decision-making purposes. But, if you want a front seat to seeing how AI can be applied in local media, we’re offering a chance for readers to sign up and check it out.
Note that this is on a separate mailing list, so signing up will not affect an existing Afternoon Update or ARLnow Press Club subscription.
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At Generation Hope, we’re dedicated to supporting teen parents in college as they work toward earning their degrees. We are in need of caring child care volunteers for upcoming events on Saturday, October 21st (in Washington, DC), and Saturday, November 4th (in Arlington, VA). Join our growing volunteer community and support us at an event this fall!
At all of our events, we provide free onsite child care for the children of the teen parents we serve, creating a nurturing environment for the kiddos while their parents learn valuable life skills and build community.
If you enjoy working with children and are looking to make an immediate impact in your community, please visit https://www.generationhope.org/volunteer to learn more.
Join us for Arlington’s biggest civil rights & social justice event of the year. The banquet is back in person at the Arlington Campus of George Mason University.
Our keynote speaker this year is Symone Sanders from MSNBC and former Chief of Staff for Vice-President Kamala Harris.
The Master of Ceremonies is Joshua Cole, former state delegate, NAACP President, and local pastor.
Tickets/seating are limited. Purchase your ticket today! Sponsorship opportunities available.
Live standup comedy starring John F. O’Donnell (Comedy Central)
Friday, October 20
Headliner: John F. O’Donnell
John was a correspondent on the radical comedy news TV show, “Redacted Tonight,” for 5 years. Recently, he released his debut one-hour standup special,