Sep 07, 2023 12:00AM
AI-Books on Amazon: Risky Business? AI-generated books are flooding Amazon, causing concerns over quality, plagiarism, and even safety. Calls for regulation are on the rise as distinguishing real from fake gets trickier. Thanks, Kevin.
Amazon earned $52.9 billion from its online sales in the second quarter. Additionally, it made $32.3 billion from marketplace transaction and fulfillment charges, and $10.6 billion from advertising. Together, the revenues coming from Amazon's online retail infrastructure services were 81% the size of Amazon's actual e-commerce sales.
Over the past five years the growth of Amazon's online retail infrastructure business outpaced its online sales. If this growth trajectory persists, within two years the revenue from services provided to sellers and brands could exceed Amazon's online product sales.
AI-generated pseudo-books are spamming Amazon and other online bookstores, sometimes borrowing real authors' names to squat on their virtual real estate.
Partly due to videos like this where some users claim they have made $1 million in four months using Chat GPT to write Kindle books.
Amazon is estimated to control at least half of all U.S. book sales, and an even bigger share of the growing e-book market.
Authors and booksellers are urging the US Justice Department to investigate Amazon, claiming Amazon’s power affects the free exchange of information.
It doesn’t help that Amazon search is increasingly turning up mediocre AI-generated titles filled with unreliable information and soggy prose.
Travel guides have become a key niche for this flood-the-zone-with-crud tactic, The New York Times has reported. Move over Rick Steves, Fodor’s and Lonely Planet. Mike Steves (an AI travel writer) has the best reviews!
AI-generated titles have also begun to infiltrate categories like cooking, programming, gardening, business, crafts, medicine, religion and mathematics, as well as self-help books and novels.
It's not always easy for buyers to distinguish these ersatz titles from human-written products.
Reviews can help — but the reviews are beginning to fill up with AI-generated posts intended to skew the ratings.
Additionally, concerns have arisen over AI-generated mushroom foraging and cook books found on Amazon.
The foraging guides appear poorly researched and might pose health risks. Many of the books have repetitive content, likely generated using ChatGPT, and feature filler material with no real value. Some include mistakes, like omitting crucial ingredients.