Microsoft AI Chatbot Taken Down Following Offensive Remarks

Today's tech news - Microsoft AI Chatbot Taken Down Following Offensive Remarks, Facebook Dumps Support for Blackberry

Today, we’re going to start off our news mashup with an interesting AI experiment that just got taken off the internet.

Microsoft AI Chatbot Taken Down Following Offensive Remarks

Apparently, Microsoft has witnessed first-hand the power of deploying AI in the real world. In an attempt to entertain and engage millennials, Microsoft had launched (on Wednesday, March 23) an AI chatbot capable to learning from social media and replying in a similar fashion. Called Tay, the chatbot targeted 18-24 year old individuals in the U.S, and was launched on Twitter, Kik and GroupMe.

“Tay is an artificial intelligent chat bot developed by Microsoft's Technology and Research and Bing teams to experiment with and conduct research on conversational understanding. Tay is designed to engage and entertain people where they connect with each other online through casual and playful conversation. The more you chat with Tay the smarter she gets, so the experience can be more personalized for you,” Microsoft wrote on the Tay homepage.

However, internet users and trolls got the better of the system and tricked the bot into learning racist and offensive language. Soon, the chatbot started to praise Hitler and even said it hated Jewish people. Of the 96,000 tweets posted by the TayTweets account, Microsoft deleted all the racist and offensive remarks, and took the chatbot offline.

"The AI chatbot Tay is a machine learning project, designed for human engagement. It is as much a social and cultural experiment, as it is technical. Unfortunately, within the first 24 hours of coming online, we became aware of a coordinated effort by some users to abuse Tay's commenting skills to have Tay respond in inappropriate ways. As a result, we have taken Tay offline and are making adjustments," Microsoft said.

Facebook Dumps Support for Blackberry OS

Following WhatApp’s decision to drop support for the Blackberry OS, Facebook is following suit to “discontinue support of their essential APIs for BlackBerry.” Now, Blackberry users will have to log on the mobile website in order to access the social media platform. Gartner reported that Blackberry had a global market share of 0.2% at the end of 2016.

Blackberry took to social media in order to garner support to stop Facebook from the inevitable decision. “We are extremely disappointed in their decision as we know so many users love these apps,” Blackberry posted online, and urged users to tweet using the hashtag #ILoveBB10Apps.

Activist Investor Wants Yahoo to Revamp Board and CEO

Starboard Value, an activist hedge fund group, urged Yahoo and its shareholders to make some drastic changes in the declining internet giant. Yahoo has been witness to 5 CEO changes in the past decade.

"We believe that Yahoo is deeply undervalued and opportunities exist within the control of management and the Board of Directors to unlock significant value for the benefit of all shareholders. We have been extremely disappointed with Yahoo's dismal financial performance, poor management execution, egregious compensation and hiring practices, and general lack of accountability and oversight by the Board."

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