17 Jan Generative AI and Digital Well-being
Generative AI, a form of artificial intelligence that creates new content such as text, images, and videos based on a set of parameters or a training dataset, has the potential to revolutionise many industries including digital media and marketing. However, it also poses a significant threat to digital well-being and the ability to disconnect from tech.
The logging-off movement, also known as the digital detox movement, or digital well-being, is a growing trend of people disconnecting from technology from time-to-time to improve mental and physical health, productivity, creativity and relationships. The movement is driven by concerns about the negative effects of technology on well-being such as addiction, anxiety, and depression. However, generative AI could potentially make it even harder for people to log off and disconnect from technology.
Keeping us even-more connected…?
One of the significant ways generative AI could impede our ability to disconnect is through the creation of highly realistic and hyper-engaging digital content. With the ability to generate text, images, and videos that are indistinguishable from those created by humans, generative AI could make it even more difficult to distinguish between real and fake content online. This could make it harder for individuals to disconnect from technology, as they may actually not be able to tell when they are interacting with real people or AI-generated content, leading to an endless cycle of interacting with technology.
Generative AI could also impact digital well-being through the creation of highly personalised digital experiences. With the ability to generate content tailored to a person’s individual preferences and interests, generative AI could make it even more difficult for individuals to disconnect from tech, as they may get hooked on cleverly personalised content, leading to an endless cycle of reliance on screens. We have already seen how this plays out with ad targeting and the attention-based economy of social media platforms.
Or…helping us disconnect?
However, generative AI also has the potential to help people disconnect from technology;
- Generative AI could help users disconnect by creating personalised “digital detox” plans that suggest activities and tasks that do not involve technology.
- By using generative AI to automate repetitive tasks, users may be able to spend less time on their devices and more time on other activities.
- Generative AI could also be used to create personalised reminders for users to take breaks and disconnect from technology, similar to how some apps currently remind users to stand or move around.
But generative AI will not be one-size-fits-all solution. It is crucial for individuals to be aware of its potential negative effects and take steps to ensure that they are using technology in a way that promotes their well-being and allows them to disconnect when necessary. It is also crucial for companies and developers to consider the impact of their technology on individuals’ well-being and to design technology that allows for healthy disconnection from technology.
In conclusion, generative AI and digital well-being look likely to have a complicated relationship. AI has the potential to revolutionise digital media and marketing, but it also poses a significant threat to the ability to disconnect from digital technologies. It is important for individuals, companies and developers to consider the potential effects of generative AI on digital well-being and take steps to ensure that it is used in a way that promotes well-being and allows for healthy disconnection from technology.