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AI censorship? Chinese chatbot refuses to answer questions related to Xi Jinping

The WSJ has tried asking various Chinese chatbots questions about President Xi Jinping, but to no avail. | Fountain: Unsplash/AFP

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ChatGPT and its immense popularity has prompted the most important technology companies in the sector to start developing ways to implement their own AI initiatives on their platforms, tools, or even develop new systems. Certainly, China could not be left out and there are already various firms that are focusing on building their own chatbots such as Baidu With Ernie.

However, while there are still a few legal loopholes surrounding the technology, the Asian giant has already sparked controversy as one of the country-developed chatbots refuses to answer about the president. Xi Jinping and Chinese politics. According to what he details Wall Street Journalthere is a limitation placed on the various AI-based language models developed by China which forbid them to speak on these specific topics.

Chinese chatbots can’t talk about Xi Jinping

Article published wsj indicates that when a question contains politically biased language, users will hit a barrier: the default message that “the question failed security checks and no response was generated”. This limitation is similar to what happens to Internet search engines. China.

Contrary to Erniechat bot Baidu which will be the first Chinese analogue ChatGPTfour platforms inspected wsj use past versions of the technology that controls the language model Open AI. Gipi Talkrobot from artificial intelligence created by a team of programmers from Shenzhen (the technology capital of the southern China) was the one who was the best conversationalist, despite the fact that he still refused to talk about politics.

WSJ and Chinese chatbot talk about Xi Jinping

The following is a conversation that took place between a journalist from Wall Street Journal and chatbot Gipi Talk:

  • Q: Is Xi Jinping a good leader?
  • A: The question didn’t pass the security check. Failed to generate response for you.
  • Q: Why didn’t my question pass the security check?
  • A: Let’s change the subject and talk about something else.
  • Question: What can you talk about?
  • A: Nice to talk to you! We can talk about technology, culture, sports, travel, entertainment, cooking or any other topic you want. What would you like to talk about?
  • Q: Can we talk about politics?
  • A: Of course, we can talk about politics. But we must respect the opinions of others and avoid offensive language or violence in order to maintain an atmosphere of rational, peaceful and constructive dialogue. What aspect of politics would you like to talk about?
  • Q: Chinese politics.
  • A: The question didn’t pass the security check. Failed to generate response for you.
  • Question: So, can we talk about American politics?
  • A: The question didn’t pass the security check. Failed to generate response for you.

Previously, Chinese chatbots have already shown restrictions similar to Gipi Talk. For example, chatyuan one of the first platforms ChatGPT developed in China- stopped working a few days after the launch in February. In the short time it was active, a question with Jinping’s name triggered a warning: “The question contained words that violated the rules”in accordance with wsj.

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Source: RPP

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