who let the cat out of the bag?!
Thought piece by Ben Weldon. Creative Director
This week has undoubtedly been my heaviest usage of AI. Primarily chatGPT and MidJourney. I’ve written and illustrated children’s books. I’ve made 1980’s mail order catalogues, produced a gangster rap about getting a job in a bank, and have been given nightmares by combining Victorian dolls and fast food. Reading, researching and playing and I’ve come to a rather chilling conclusion.
When the mobile phone was invented, I thought that it was handy and it would be convenient. When i got my first email in 1996, I loved how quick it made sending letters. I thought the internet was cool and that it was easier than CDroms or spending time in the library. These inventions all seemed just a little bit better than what was there before. In those first few years of improvement I couldn’t see how life changing they would be. AI is different.
I’ve been using MidJourney for about 6 months, the latest version is twice as good as what we had 1 month ago. I’ve been using ChatGPT for a month, it gets better every few days. By the end of this year their results will be astonishing. The cats are out of the bag. These systems are not a better version of what we had before. They are not a small improvement to your bank’s chatbot, or new speedy tool in photoshop, they can produce your life time of creative output in a day.
If you’re a mediocre artist, illustrator or copywriter you are out of a job this year. If your work entails writing generic content, emails, SOP’s, reports, job descriptions, internal coms, indeed anything junior in corporate, there isn’t going to be much need for you now. When the first machines threatened to take jobs away from people that wove fabrics by hand, we just made more clothes, for less. This trend more or less continued, Instagram upset photographers but created the influencer. This is not the same, there isn’t another level to all these jobs. They are the jobs that people with 15 years of experience need people with 2 years of experience to do. Might this snap the career ladder?
ChatGPT didn’t write this, but a year from now it might be able to. What then is the value of written content. Would you have read this far knowing it was computer generated? Or perhaps, you would skip over it knowing a human had written it.