A new Internet phenomenon has reached our own corner of the Stack Exchange network. Today, we had for the first time an answer which we suspect has been generated by ChatGPT.
The network has been plagued by this kind of answers since the tool came out a few weeks ago. They tend to be at the same time convincingly written and of dubious veracity. That is, it is a coin toss as to whether they are right or wrong, but they come across as written by somebody who knows what they're talking about.
The main issues that stem from these answers are:
- reduction of content quality (due to many wrong and/or vacuous answers)
- interference with the vote usefulness (due to many misguided upvotes for impressively written wrong answers)
- rep farming (due to the same upvotes and the ability to post large volumes of answers)
- unmanageable increase in moderation load (only on SO so far)
- copyright and plagiarism (the situation is quite muddy there)
Stackexchange-the-company has decided to leave it to each site to decide how to deal with these answers. Many sites, notably Stackoverflow itself, have decided to ban ChatGPT generated answers, but this is not a default policy network-wide.
What should we do with these answers, as a community?