Danish PM relies on ChatGPT-written speech to address lawmakers


Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen before a visit to the future site of Zagrebs terminal Deep Sea, the future Rijeka Gateway terminal, in Rijeka on March 6, 2023. — AFP
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen before a visit to the future site of Zagreb’s terminal Deep Sea, the future Rijeka Gateway terminal, in Rijeka on March 6, 2023. — AFP

Despite several warnings by tech leaders about potential errors that artificial intelligence (AI) could make, Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen depended on a speech written by ChatGPT Wednesday to address lawmakers in the parliament, highlighting the revolutionary aspects and risks of AI.

The speech was given in a traditional manner by the Danish government as the legislative house gets ready to close for the summer.

“What I have just read here is not from me. Or any other human for that matter”, Frederiksen suddenly said part-way into her speech to legislators, explaining it was written by ChatGPT.

“Even if it didn’t always hit the nail on the head, both in terms of the details of the government’s work programme and punctuation… it is both fascinating and terrifying what it is capable of,” the PM added.

OpenAI-created ChatGPT came into the global limelight as it demonstrated its ability to write human-like prose, essays, poems and conversation.

A representational image of a mobile phone showing ChatGPT and in the background, the creator of ChatGPT, OpenAI. — AFP/File
A representational image of a mobile phone showing ChatGPT and in the background, the creator of ChatGPT, OpenAI. — AFP/File

After it grabbed the public attention, tech behemoths raced to incorporate AI-powered systems in their products, sparking tech leaders, academicians and experts to voice concerns about the arms race and the speedy development of the technology.

The major concerns include the AI systems could disseminate misinformation, false images, racism driven by biased algorithms and automation replacing humans in industries.

The concerns are also expected to take centre stage in a high-level meeting between the European Union (EU) and the US Wednesday in Lulea, Sweden.

A day earlier Tuesday, a number of AI experts, academicians and notable people including OpenAI CEO and Google DeepMind warned of humanity’s extinction if the threats posed by AI to humans were not dealt with as a top global priority.

In a brief statement published on the webpage of the Centre for AI Safety Tuesday, it read: “Mitigating the risk of extinction from AI should be a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks such as pandemics and nuclear war.”

The statement was also backed by Sam Altman, CEO of ChatGPT-maker OpenAI, Demis Hassabis, CEO of Google DeepMind and Dario Amodei of Anthropic.

The part of Frederiksen’s AI speech included sentences like the following: “It has been an honour and a challenge to lead a broad government in the last parliamentary year.”

“We have worked hard to co-operate across parties and ensure a strong and sustainable future for Denmark,” and “We have taken steps to combat climate change and ensure a fairer and more inclusive society where all citizens have equal opportunities,” the speech written by ChatGPT wrote.

“Although we have faced challenges and resistance along the way, I am proud of what we have achieved together in the last parliamentary year.”



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