New Delhi: Since the inception of ChatGPT-like AI tools, it is believed that they have caused the elimination of hundreds of jobs in content creation, resulting in a significant impact on people’s livelihoods. One such individual, Sharanya Battacharya, experienced a drastic decline in her income, dropping by 90% over the past few months. She had been working as a ghostwriter and copywriter for a creative solutions agency while pursuing her degree.
Previously, Sharanya could earn up to $240 a month (around Rs 20,000) by writing SEO-optimized articles each week. However, with the advent of ChatGPT and similar AI tools, she faced a sharp decrease in work opportunities, receiving only one or two articles per month. She suspected that companies were turning to AI for content and ghostwriting tasks to reduce costs, leading to a lack of work for human writers.
The reduced workload had a severe impact on Sharanya’s life and her family’s financial situation. In a New York Post, she said the money she earned supported her and her mother, covering their expenses for food and bills. However, due to the decline in work, they had to adjust their lifestyle drastically. They had to monitor their food consumption carefully and cut back on activities they used to enjoy, like eating out, which they could now only do once every couple of months. The situation became extremely tough for them, making it challenging to meet their basic needs.
Sharanya, being a postgraduate biological science student at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), hopes that companies will adopt a more ethical approach regarding staff reductions to cut costs. She believes that a more balanced approach should be taken to incorporate AI technology while still supporting human workers.
In another instance, an Indian startup called Dukaan faced severe criticism from netizens when they decided to replace 90% of their staff with AI chat. The company’s CEO, Suumit Shah, posted the announcement on Twitter, which quickly went viral and drew significant backlash online.
It is evident that the widespread adoption of AI tools like ChatGPT has had significant consequences for individuals like Sharanya and companies like Dukaan. While AI can bring many benefits and efficiencies, there is a need for ethical considerations to ensure a more balanced and fair impact on the job market and people’s livelihoods.
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