Fortune-telling vs. crafting the future

Our futures are being influenced, if not developed, by artificial intelligence. Behavioural-targeting algorithms on social media, on the surface used to ‘tailor’ our feeds, but too easily abused by bad actors to manipulate our feelings, alter our beliefs, undermine democracy and keep us trapped inside filter bubbles that reinforce our biases and tell us what we want to hear.

Jordan Harper, Creative Review

Our society’s future – really, the global future – is being built on these big-tech influenced platforms. Chase recently signed a five-year commitment with Persado (a.i. created marketing). Ads created by machine learning were clicked on more than ads written by humans…words chosen by generative machines are now more appealing than those from humans.

Is this really because they sound better, or are we just taking the bait? To quote Roy Amara, a researcher on futurism from the 70s, “It is the decisions we make now that do more than anything else to shape the future that we end up in.”

How can we use artificial intelligence responsibly…embrace emerging technology but also help navigate the best ways to apply it?

There is a responsibility in art, but (there should be and I wish there was) also in advertising and entertainment, to keep the focus on creative…to not follow the formulas for success or consumption, but to push the boundaries of what is possible. And it should be about compassion – to keep checking the pulse of one’s own humanity. Fight the power.

Later, bots – I’m signing off…I’ll stick with reading Janelle Shane / AI Weirdness!!

Boardwalk shop

This is a great way to use the power of advertising – and art for that matter…it asks for user interaction in a natural way. Within that interaction the advertising needs are met, and vice versa.

NYC-based artist BuffMonster was asked by agency TBD to create a large summer-inspired mural “as part of the Brazilian flip-flop brand’s marketing push to help raise awareness in the U.S.”

It was printed on soft material similar to Havainas slippers – passersby were encouraged to shed their shoes and “Step Into Summer.” To make the interaction experience even more fun, they used Google Vision technology to allow consumers to “shop” at the mural.

AdAge details the setup: “Consumers could aim their phone’s cameras at the mural’s different patterns and embedded Easter Eggs to shop products with their respective themes. The site not only took them to the point-of-purchase, it also offered styling tips from celebrity stylist Tara Swennen on how to wear the sandals with outfits from day to night.”

There was a recent call for mural ideas where I live – the design they picked was fine, just not especially inspiring, certainly not interactive. I’m for seeing more work like this – let’s bring the best of art and technology together, with advertising money, for the good.