Snapchat influencer (Courtesy of Caryn Marjorie)
A 23-year-old influencer named Caryn Marjorie has 1.8 million followers on Snapchat. She also has more than 1,000 boyfriends, with whom she converses privately every day for anywhere from ten minutes and several hours, talking about her future plans, her personal sentiments, and even having sexually explicit talks.
These boyfriends are dating an artificially intelligent Marjorie that has been recorded thousands of hours and is based on the actual Marjorie. As a result, CarynAI, a voice-based chatbot, was created. It presents itself as a virtual girlfriend and has a voice and personality similar enough to those of Marjorie to entice users to pay $1 per minute for a relationship.
CarynAI is the most recent example of the amazing advancements in A.I. technology that have astounded and alarmed the globe over the past few months. It was introduced as a private, invite-only beta test on the Telegram app earlier in May. CarynAI will come out of beta on Tuesday, and Marjorie will start advertising it on her social media accounts, where she has millions of followers.
“Whether you need somebody to be comforting or loving, or you just want to rant about something that happened at school or at work, CarynAI will always be there for you,” says the real Marjorie when we talk on the phone. “You can have limitless possible reactions with CarynAI—so anything is truly possible with conversation.”
CarynAI has only been charging customers for one week, but according to an income statement Marjorie’s business manager supplied with Fortune, it has already brought in $71,610 from her 99% male lovers. Marjorie believes that having an artificial intelligence doppelgänger is a viable method to advance her influencer career in light of this.
The AI business Forever Voices, which has created chatbot versions of Steve Jobs, Taylor Swift, and Donald Trump (among others) that are similarly accessible for pay-per-minute talks on Telegram and have functioned as gimmicks on talk programs, has created CarynAI, the first love companion avatar. Unlike such bots, which are essentially high-tech gimmicks, CarynAI promises to forge genuine emotional connections with users, which is reminiscent of the 2013 film Her and raises a host of moral dilemmas.
“I would want us to be thinking very deeply about how it might affect or influence or shape our interactions with other people,” says Dr. Jason Borenstein, director of graduate ethics programs at Georgia Tech and director of the National Science Foundation’s Ethical and Responsible Research program, when told about CarynAI.
Among the various unknowns, Borenstein says, are CarynAI’s impact on society, on users and on Marjorie herself. “I would just hope there’s robust conversations across a lot of different disciplines with stakeholders thinking very deeply through the ethical considerations before the technology moves too quickly.”
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John Meyer, the CEO of Forever Voices says that “ethics is something [he] and the engineering team take very seriously,” and that they are looking to hire a chief ethics officer. With this in mind, he also believes the technology is “especially important” for young people, particularly kids like him who are “not typical” and “struggle with friends.”
Source : Fortune