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Public Opinion Manipulation Technique: Sensational Spin

Sensational Spin

Early Last month, many media outlets were abuzz with a misleading title: lookout, a Chinese robot woman who has become the first artificial intelligence CEO of a §10 billion gaming giant.

We find in this title the full recipe of sensational keywords for a story that would scare us and excite our apocalyptic fantasies: Chinesehumanoid robotartificial intelligence that steals our jobs and is able to take decisions in our place, right?

Yeah! but what if we dig deeper into the source of this story first?

Everything about this story feels questionable, right? But as we investigate the origin of these articles, we find the only original source is a press release from the company in question, NetDragon Websoft. A video game company working in the metaverse world, who has launched a “word-play“ PR campaign. That being said, so far not a single editor has bothered to dig into the story and check the facts. Everyone just picked up on the communication operation as usual.

But, what’s the truth behind this story?

As a matter of fact, there is no robot, but a 3D character (a specialty of the company), she is not a CEO but part of a group of rotating CEOs. This is what we can understand or read between the lines of the press release. This character suggests that it is mostly a toolbox to use different algorithms and Artificial Intelligence to optimize the management of the company. Nothing extraordinary. Except for the publicity stunt.

The problem with this kind of sensationalist spin is that it emphasizes a misleading hype about a subject rather than presenting it for what it is. A tool in this very case, with its advantages and disadvantages, while the sensational spin together with the images of humanoid robots to illustrate the articles stir up fantasies, participates in disinformation, and takes us away from the real issues.


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