Newsie: Psychedelic Week's news gathering AI chatbot
Newsie, a customized version of ChatGPT, summarizes the week's psychedelic news and answers your questions
Psychedelic Week has created a customized version of ChatGPT called Newsie: Psychedelic Week’s AI newsgathering chatbot, to summarize news from the psychedelic ecosystem for the past seven days. Users can select one of several pre-written search options or input personalized questions or search instructions (unfortunately, access to customized GPTs like Newsie is limited to ChatGPT Plus subscribers, which could change in the future).
2023 was a pivotal year for artificial intelligence (AI). Leading chatbot developer OpenAI publicly released ChatGPT, its take on large language models (LLMs), in November of 2022. But LLM technology really hit its stride in early 2023, when OpenAI improved the platform by releasing ChatGPT Plus in February and ChatGPT 4 in March. These developments made ChatGPT a household name and one of the fastest growing apps of all time.
Earlier this month, OpenAI released its latest version, ChatGPT 4 Turbo. The update allows ChatGPT Plus subscribers to create customized “GPTs” and automate a variety of tasks. For instance, GPTs can search the internet, analyze documents, create images, and engage users in conversation. But what makes customized GPTs so interesting and useful is the ability to train them on unique data (such as uploaded images or documents) and provide specialized instructions. These updates can make customized GPTs more focused and effective than OpenAI’s public release version.
As you will quickly learn from using them, Newsie and other GPTs can be informative, entertaining, and sometimes very impressive. But they’re far from perfect (and unlikely to replace psychedelic journalists anytime soon). Perhaps with ChatGPT version 5.0?
While entrepreneurs and consumers embrace AI chatbots, OpenAI and its competitors work to integrate them into many industries, such as healthcare. My academic colleague Claudia Haupt and I have written about potential medical applications and risks in two articles for the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA): AI-Generated Medical Advice—GPT and Beyond and AI Chatbots, Health Privacy, and Challenges to HIPAA Compliance.
To address AI risks, the Biden Administration published a fact sheet in July on its efforts to secure voluntary commitments from leading AI companies to mitigate concerns regarding safety, privacy, security, and transparency. While AI-related norms and regulations take shape, consumers should exercise caution and skepticism when using chatbots, which can provide inconsistent and inaccurate results. Newsie is instructed to provide links to references that support its responses. However, the quality of those references can vary considerably.
Since its inception, Psychedelic Week has used AI to create images to accompany its stories. OpenAI’s DALL-E 4 created the image above, depicting a humanoid robot “newsie” in a futuristic version of New York City. Customized GPTs can utilize DALL-E to produce images in addition to searching the internet and analyzing uploaded information.
If you have access to ChatGPT Plus and can try Newsie, please let me know what you think of its results. What roles do you think AI should play in newsgathering and reporting?
*The views expressed on Psychedelic Week do not represent the views of Harvard University, POPLAR at the Petrie-Flom Center at Harvard Law School, Florida State University, or the Florida State University College of Law. Psychedelic Week is an independent project unaffiliated with these and other programs and institutions.
Mason Marks, MD, JD is a Visiting Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. He is also the Florida Bar Health Law Section Professor at Florida State University, senior fellow and project lead of the Project on Psychedelics Law and Regulation (POPLAR) at the Petrie-Flom Center at Harvard Law School, and an affiliated fellow at the Information Society Project at Yale Law School. Marks teaches drug law, psychedelic law, constitutional law, and administrative law. Before moving to Florida, he served on the Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board where he chaired its Licensing Subcommittee. Marks has drafted drug policies for state and local lawmakers. His forthcoming book on psychedelic law and politics will be published by Yale University Press. He tweets at @MasonMarksMD and @PsychedelicWeek.