Artificial Intelligence Enters Election Campaigns: How Will It Affect Latin America? | Comment

Images of Donald Trump being arrested by police officers on the streets of New York. A video showing America’s apocalyptic future if Joe Biden wins a second term as president. King Felipe VI’s statement apologizing to Catalans for not remaining neutral in the 2017 independence referendum. A conversation between a Mexican candidate and Benjamin Franklin regarding the border situation between their countries.

All of these contents have two things in common: they were officially used by candidates or parties in campaigns or political messages this year, and they were all generated by artificial intelligence (AI). Presidential elections in Argentina and Ecuador, runoffs in Guatemala, regional elections in Colombia, and the internal process of selecting presidential candidates in Mexico are just a few examples of the impact this generative technology is beginning to have on political discourse. All this will happen by the end of 2023.

Will these be AI elections or will we still have to wait to see the potential scope of this technology? Will the impact continue to flash videos broadcast officially or unofficially on social networks or will we see new projects?

To answer these questions, it is necessary to assess the current level of use of AI in Latin America and it is interesting to review the data of a recently published report. Hello Safe. According to the study, the challenge of the pandemic has led the private sector in the region to start betting heavily on AI from 2021. Half of Colombian companies already use these tools, as do 49% of Peruvian companies, 41% of Argentine and Brazilian companies, and 40% of Mexican companies. Notably, 6 out of 10 companies that have incorporated this technology have done so for the development of services such as marketing and contact center automation. That is, in activities that require direct or indirect contact with the client.

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Taking into account this data, the application of AI will improve the chats that will allow to know the proposals of the party and the candidates in terms of aspects that directly affect the voters and try to persuade them to support them. It is clear that innovation is not uniform across the region. Much of the progress has been concentrated in countries such as Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Chile, where internet penetration and the influence of digital communication are deeper than in other regions.

Internal change

So far we have seen examples of elements that directly affect the voter, but AI is bringing about changes in the dynamics and operational methods of campaigns that will have important consequences.

We will certainly see major developments in the same direction during the US presidential election next year. There, the Democratic Party and the Republican Party Already using these tools To simplify difficult and complex data mining tasks. The goal is to identify donors and voters better and faster, and identify patterns of behavior that can be used to garner donations and support. Just as Donald Trump’s campaign revolutionized it Micro target with the questionable suggestion that Cambridge Analytica In 2016, we will see very soon how far new tools can go.

But beyond data analytics, AI can transform campaign teams by automating essential, time-consuming tasks like creating social media posts or speaking proposals. ChatGPT can propose a short text draft in seconds. Obviously, the results weren’t great. They are impersonal, have significant biases and lack humanity.

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The overuse and lack of care and refinement of these tools can stifle the creativity and innovation that characterizes human intelligence, but the agility they allow, if well-calibrated, will undeniably help candidates with much smaller budgets and teams more effectively counter well-known and well-funded individuals in the future.

Ethical challenge

All of these issues we have mentioned pose a significant ethical challenge. How are you going to confirm that? Deep fakes Aren’t AI-enhanced fodder for voter scams? Do new data mining practices represent a new challenge for protecting personal information?

After the release of the Republican apocalyptic video of Biden’s second term, Democrats brought it to Congress. Ra Chi Thu To force labeling of ads generated with AI. This is a good first step, but there is certainly more to be done.

The fundamental struggle of our time in communication – and especially in politics – is for our attention. It is a rare good: a second, a minute, an hour, a day… cannot grow. Due to the enormous, overflowing and hyper-competing information presented, our attention span is very limited, driven by powerful audience adjustment mechanisms thanks to sophisticated algorithms, which compete for our time: the most precious and rare asset.

In this hectic fight, AI has the ability to adapt itself to a perfect osmosis between our desires and behaviors and the information it can provide us. We associated programs that reproduce feelings and artificial humanizing environments from asking questions. And give us a comfortable non-judgmental and personalized relationship with the ability to create perfect bubbles.

Additionally, AI has an enormous predictive capability and can be used with rigor and depth to anticipate electoral behavior. This power can shift the distribution of resources and energies to focus all strategic and persuasive efforts on disaffected voters (those who are in doubt whether to vote, or for whom); border (movable between two adjacent options); Transfer (they must vote for another option that was not their first choice in the second round of elections).

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Democracy and electoral processes in Latin America face extraordinary challenges created by AI. Unless regulation adequately controls it, we are going to see larger and larger intervention trials to impose conditions or narratives and strategies. It is necessary to prevent AI from turning democracy into a laboratory for guinea pig citizens, where freedom is replaced by a deep manipulation of preferences and criteria.

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