World Of Warcraft


A Narrative

Reddit, I mean Zleague

Given that Google does not seem to care whether content is AI-generated or not, as a professional computer game blogger I am deeply annoyed/terrified by the prospect of AI-run sites not always changing me, but at the very least, crowding me out of Google.

That’s why it’s refreshing to watch a gaming community dish out some justice in a hilarious way. Recently, users of the Wow subreddit discovered that the website (which I will not link to) scrapes reddit threads, feeds them into an artificial intelligence system that generates a summary with “essential takeaways” and spits out paragraphs that all follow the same format, and then publishes the results. It stinks, but it can crank out a blog post with enough keywords to get you ranked on Google.

The angry redditors decided to play around with the bots. A big discussion was created on r/WoW to discuss the introduction of Glorbo, a new feature that, as you may guess from the name, is not actually part of the game.

“I have to say, ever since they first used the term in Hearthstone back in 1994, it was clear that they would introduce Glorbo to World of Warcraft at some point. It seems like everything Dragonflight has done so far has been successful; for example, bringing back Chen Stormstout as the new Karazhan’s completion manager. Unquestionably amazing!

Indeed, it did the trick. A post on Zleague headlined “World of Warcraft Players Excited for Glorbo’s Introduction” was published automatically. Here are the most important things to remember:

  • It has been reported that “players reveal enjoyment for Glorbo’s arrival and its possible effect on the video game.”
  • “Some players have reservations about Klikclac’s mandatory nature and its impact on casual players.”
  • As the saying goes, “rumours of Stormsong Valley ending up being the brand-new place for the Halfhill Market and farming sim mini-game produce interest.”
  • “Appreciation for the changes made in the past to the video game, such as making Klaxxi a playable race.”

All of that is just nonsense. The article was left up for quite some time before being taken down (here’s a mirror, enjoy). All of the bylines you see on this site are fake. There appears to be little to no oversight of this operation.

It’s an unusual situation because the website isn’t “taking” anything in the usual sense; it’s plagiarising without giving any credit. Reddit threads and writers are highlighted, and the reddit post is often embedded. While it’s one thing to glean story ideas from reddit and build upon them, seeing as how these communities tend to be the best for private games online, it’s quite another to simply auto-feed reddit threads into an AI and have it spit this out. Nothing can stop this from happening again. Even if this particular example provides some amusement, it is not acceptable for these subreddits to become clogged with funny postings.

As begging for Google’s traffic crumbs is the only reason these AI-based websites exist in the first place, the only way to stop this is if Google takes action and severely demotes or bans them. I’m not holding my breath because Google has its own very obvious vested interest in AI.

You should be excited for Glorbo because, according to what I’ve heard, it’s the best upgrade since the quest to remove Quackion as the Aspect of Ducks.

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