Apologizing For Automated Letters Generated By ChatGPT

Vanderbilt University faces criticism from its student body due to its usage of ChatGPT in generating a letter concerning the mass shooting at Michigan State University intended for the wider Vanderbilt community.

EDI at Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education was the source of a much-criticized statement last week due to its conception being seen as impersonal and devoid of empathy.

Office of Equity spokesperson says:

“The recent Michigan shootings are a tragic reminder of the importance of taking care of each other, particularly in the context of creating inclusive environments,” the letter’s opening line read. “As members of the Peabody campus community, we must reflect on the impact of such an event and take steps to ensure that we are doing our best to create a safe and inclusive environment for all.”

“In order to create a community which welcomes everyone and encourages mutual respect, it is necessary to appreciate the variety of backgrounds, outlooks, and identities that make up members of our university. This means actively constructing an environment in which everyone feels supported and their differences are celebrated—as articulated in the letter.”

The signature line featured a disclaimer indicating that the statement was paraphrased from OpenAI’s ChatGPT AI language model. With this message, we aim to promote such an environment on campus – one that is safe and inclusive for everyone.

“Sick And Twisted Irony”: Exploring The Darker Side of Irony

The PR stunt jolted students and community members; they deemed university administrators had masterminded, criticizing them for the mistakes.

Vanderbilt senior Laith Kayat described the use of ChatGPT as “disgusting,” because his sister attends Mississippi State University (MSU). This sentiment was reported by The Vanderbilt Hustler, the university’s student newspaper.

Laith Kayat says:

“There is a sick and twisted irony to making a computer write your message about community and togetherness because you can’t be bothered to reflect on it yourself.”

 “[Administrators] only care about perception and their institutional politics of saving face.”

Kayat stated that administrators must strive to do better instead of turning to a robot to replace a leader in the university.

How Administrators Failed To Review An Important Letter

On Friday, a day after the initial letter was issued, Nicole M. Joseph, associate Dean for EDI, sent a follow-up email saying her office had made an error in judgment by using ChatGPT to reflect on the MSU shooting.

Laith Kayat went on to say:

“As with all new technologies that affect higher education, this moment gives us all an opportunity to reflect on what we know and what we still must learn about AI.”

The Vanderbilt Hustler reported that Dean Camilla Benbow’s office had never seen the incident giving rise to Joseph’s follow-up letter before its distribution. Joseph’s controversial missive contained the full text of his letter.

Laith Kayat went on to say:

“The development and distribution of the initial email did not follow Peabody’s normal processes providing for multiple layers of review before being sent.”

The investigation into the incident, headed by Benbow (the Dean), has resulted in Joseph (the Associate Dean) and Hasina Mohyuddin (the Assistant Dean) being placed on temporary leave, as enforced by The Dean’s Office.

Laith Kayat adds:

“I am also deeply troubled that a communication from my administration so missed the crucial need for personal connection and empathy during a time of tragedy.”

Poor Judgment

The application of ChatGPT has received a lot of attention, with many chief executives relying on this tool for writing speeches and as guidance. This has led to conversations about the jobs ChatGPT may ultimately replace.

ChatGPT can summarize data and generate text, but Columbia Business School professor Oded Netzer noted that the software lacks a core feature that makes humans unique: judgment. Despite its facility with text summarization and generation, the software cannot replicate the human capacity for emotional intelligence.

professor Oded Netzer says:

“Understanding why” behind facts and figures and expressing genuine emotion are still “the types of tasks that require judgment and that humans are still very valuable in.”

Last night, a student at Vanderbilt University was fatally shot after an altercation in one of the dormitories. The university has released a statement apologizing for the ChatGPT-generated letter sent to students informing them of the incident.

Source: cbsnews.com

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top