Amazon is introducing a new policy requiring Kindle Direct publishers to disclose their use of AI. This follows months of discussions with the Authors Guild.
Thanks to ChatGPT and digital self-publishing, even amateurs with funky titles and generic content can at least try to make a quick buck with AI-generated novels or how-to books.
Some of these AI books even use the style of established authors and achieve good sales results.
The AI texts can even be dangerous, as AI-generated mushroom advice books show. These obviously unverified pure AI works confuse edible and inedible mushrooms, for example.
AI-generated text, images, and translations must be disclosed
Amazon is now reining in this Wild West, at least a little: The Authors Guild reports that after "months of discussion," the e-commerce giant has agreed to make it mandatory to ask authors about the use of purely AI-generated text, images, and translations in their works.
"The new policy comes after months of discussions between the Authors Guild and KDP leadership on the need for safeguards against AI-generated books flooding the platform and displacing human authors and to protect consumers from unwittingly purchasing AI-generated texts," the advocacy group writes.
The Authors Guild distinguishes between AI-generated and AI-assisted. AI can be a useful tool for authors, it says.
However, it can be difficult to draw that sometimes fine line in day-to-day editing because AI text or image detectors do not work reliably. There is also the question of how much or how little human input is needed to turn assistance into generation, or vice versa.
So far, AI authoring information is only available to Kindle users, not other channels. Amazon plans to use the newly collected data to further develop its own guidelines for AI content, according to the Authors Guild.
The Authors Guild is also advocating for the copyrights of authors whose works are used for AI training without their consent. The advocacy group is demanding compensation from AI companies and threatening legal action if they fail to do so.