Trust the Robots and Consume: Amazon Unveils AI-Generated Product Listings

Sex Robot lab
Fred Dufour

Amazon has unveiled a new AI service designed to transform how sellers create and manage product listings, claiming AI-generated listings will offer customers a more enriched shopping experience. Despite these promises, Amazon has had many problems with AI in recent months.

The Register reports that Amazon has launched a generative AI service to assist sellers in crafting compelling and detailed product descriptions. The tech giant announced that this AI service is set to “dramatically improve the listing creation and management experience for sellers.”

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos during the JFK Space Summit at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston, Wednesday, June 19, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

The AI technology, whose underlying architecture remains undisclosed, allows sellers to input a “brief description of the product in a few words or sentences.” The AI then takes over, generating what Amazon describes as “high-quality content for their review.” Sellers have the option to either approve this AI-generated content or directly submit it to Amazon’s catalog without manual intervention.

Amazon is confident that this new approach will provide customers with “more complete, consistent, and engaging product information,” thereby enhancing their overall shopping experience. However, the company has not elaborated on how it plans to mitigate potential AI-generated errors or oddities in the product listings.

AI systems tend to produce bizarre and nonsensical content when not carefully reviewed and edited by humans. Breitbart News recently reported on Microsoft pulling down embarrassing travel articles created by AI:

One of the articles, titled “Headed to Ottawa? Here’s what you shouldn’t miss!” went viral after it bizarrely recommended visitors to the Canadian city to visit the Ottawa Food Bank and to “consider going into it on an empty stomach.” The article was widely shared on social media as an example of AI bungling content for humans. In response to the criticism, Microsoft issued a statement blaming human error for the content.

Amazon itself is already struggling with AI-generated garbage filling up its marketplace. Breitbart News recently reported that mushroom foraging guides created by AI systems are full of misinformation putting readers at risk of eating poison mushrooms:

404 Media reports that The New York Mycological Society has raised an alarm over the increasing number of AI-generated mushroom foraging books appearing on Amazon. According to the society, these books could pose serious risks to public health. “These AI-generated foraging books could actually kill people if they eat the wrong mushroom because a guidebook written by an AI prompt said it was safe,” the NYMS stated on social media.

In another case, the company faced a backlash after flooding the market with “garbage books” created by AI but published under the names of prominent human authors:

 Decrypt reports that when professor Jane Friedman discovered books she didn’t write being attributed to her on Amazon, she was met with initial resistance from the e-commerce giant, which did not want to remove the bogus titles from sale. The titles, which Friedman referred to as “garbage books,” were likely created using generative AI and included guides like “Your Guide to Writing a Bestseller eBook on Amazon,” “Publishing Power: Navigating Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing,” and “Promote to Prosper: Strategies to Skyrocket Your eBook Sales on Amazon.”

Read more at the Register here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan



Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.