Chatbots misinform citizens about European Parliament elections

Occurred: March 2024

Popular chatbots are spreading falsehoods about the European Parliament elections, according to new research.

ChatGPT, Microsoft's Copilot and Google's Gemini tools returned incorrect election dates and information about how to cast a ballot at the European Parliament elections, according to analysis by Berlin-based NGO Democracy Reporting International. They were also found to provide broken or even irrelevant links to YouTube videos, and even content in Japanese.

The researchers asked the same 10 questions in 10 European languages in March 2024 to the chatbots, to which ChatGPT 4 (OpenAI's paid version) was found to perform the best. Google’s Gemini was deemed the least likely to give correct answers.

The findings highlghted concerns about the accuracy and reliability of popular chatbots, their tendency to 'hallucinate' information and produce misinformation and disinformation, and and their potential impact on politics, elections, and democracy.

The European Parliament elections are due to take place in June 6-9, 2024.

Operator: Alphabet/Google; Microsoft; OpenAI
Developer: Alphabet/Google; Microsoft; OpenAI
Country: European Parliament
Sector: Politics
Purpose: Generate text
Technology: Chatbot
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Mis/disinformation
Transparency: Governance

Research, advocacy 🧮