MSN AI article falsely accuses Irish DJ of sexual misconduct

Occurred: January 2024

An AI-generated news article falsely accused an Irish talk show host of sexual misconduct, raising questions about the reliability and reputation of two AI-powered news services.

The article, produced by AI-powered news service “BNN Breaking”, claimed that Irish DJ and talk show host Dave Fanning was due to face trial over alleged sexual misconduct. Titled “Prominent Irish broadcaster faces trial over alleged sexual misconduct", the false report, was featured on MSN’s homepage for several hours before being taken down.

Fanning is now suing BNN and Microsoft for defamation, arguing that the article was live long enough to cause reputational damage. The incident is the latest in a series involving Microsoft's AI-powered news service.

Hong Kong-based BNN uses AI to churn out thousands of articles a day, the majority of which are reportedly never fact-checked by a human being. 

The incident represents a multi-pronged failure of AI-generated and republished 'news'.

➕ June 2024. The New York Times published a detailed analysis of BNN and its founder, entrepreneur and convicted criminal Gurbaksh Chaha.

Operator: Microsoft/MSN
Developer: Microsoft/MSN
Country: Ireland; USA
Sector: Media/entertainment/sports/arts
Purpose: Select news articles
Technology: Machine learning; NLP/text analysis; Neural networks; Deep learning
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Defamation; Mis/disinformation
Transparency: Governance