Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Quasi-Pornographic AI Titles Dominate Amazon’s Young Adult Best-Seller List

'Sounds like a really bad attempt at surrealist fiction...'

(Jacob Bruns, Headline USA) Amazon’s Young Adult romance section best-seller list has been dominated by nonsensical and quasi-pornographic artificial intelligence-produced novels, Vice reported.

As of Wednesday, Amazon appeared to be in the process of removing dozens of titles that had secured spots in the section’s “top 100” by way of “click farming”—that is, hiring low-wage workers to click links over and over again to boost a product’s views.

Titles include the likes of When the three attacksApricot bar code architectureThe journey to becoming enlightened is arduousDepartment of Vinh Du Stands in Front of His Parents’ Tombstone and Jessica’s Attention.

Caitlyn Lynch, an independent author, suggested that AI has fundamentally altered the way that Amazon works.

“The AI bots have broken Amazon,” Lynch wrote in a tweet on Monday.

According to Lynch, only 19 out of the top 100 books in the “Best Sellers in Teen & Young Adult Contemporary Romance eBooks” section were written by living authors during a recent review of the site.

All of the others were allegedly written by artificial intelligence bots.

Many of the books contained poorly-written and raunchy passages. The opening lines of Apricot bar code architecture, for example, were: “Black lace pajamas, very short skirt, the most important thing, now this lace pajamas are all wet.”

The first page also contained allusions to being “sexy,” and the book as a whole included long chapters of incomprehensible dialogue.

Lynch predicted that AI-generated novels “will absolutely be the death knell for [Kindle Unlimited] if Amazon cannot kill this off,” because writers will pull their books from Amazon in search of markets that actually promote writing and are not vulnerable to the practice of click farming.

For others, however, the development raised deeper questions about what constitutes literary and artistic merit.

And some readers were intrigued to find out what the newly banned books might actually contain that was so problematic that Amazon had to deplatform them.

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