ChatGPT-4o - OpenAI's ickiest product yet

Today, OpenAI released their new model: ChatGPT-4o. No, that’s not a typo. It’s not forty, but “four” “o”. The letter “o” stands for “omni”. If you think it doesn’t make sense at all, it’s because you’re not as smart as them.

In their announcement video, they show off capabilities that might seem mind-blowing at first: A young male sits at a table, his phone in his hands, with the ChatGPT app open. On the app, you see a live feed of his phone camera and microphone. He then asks ChatGPT to guess what he’s doing and swirls his phone around to show his surroundings. A voice responds, guessing that he’s filming some kind of announcement. Not bad.

All the negative impacts (like energy and water usage, racism, sexism, etc,) of LLMs such as ChatGPT aside, what icked me the most about this announcment was that the voice is a young female’s voice, and it’s very flirty. The way it laughs, the way it intonates, what words it chooses.

It is sexist, ageist, creepy, cringe and icky. Don’t believe me? Watch the video!. Clearly, the people who built this are young males who’ve watched the movie “Her” one too many times. You can just see what kind of interactions weirdo (mostly males) will be having with this “AI”.

How is it possible that something like this makes it out the door? Were there no real adults, women, or otherwise people with some common sense and empathy around who said something like “WTF?!” upon seeing the first internal demo?

From a technological perspective, this model doesn’t improve on existing model’s “reasoning” capabilities. So, in classic OpenAI fashion, this is a very hyped up product announcement. This is not the beginning of an exponential curve, it’s the end of a logarithimc one.

Still, it’s concerning that people use LLMs for all kind of shit. Either to produce bullshit on purpose, or because they’re too lazy too look up information online and use common sense to verifiy it. Now, with this always-on, flirty pocket-girlfriend, LLMs are also going to have a negative impact on many young male’s social lives and mental health. I’m an optimistic person, but it’s hard to not be pessimistic and cynical seeing the developments in this field in the past few years. Hope I’m wrong.