While perusing the daily spreadsheets, I noticed this post on TechCrunch via Slashdot:
A startup in North Carolina, StatSheet, today is launching a remarkable network of 345 sports sites, one dedicated to each Division 1 college basketball team in the U.S. For instance, there is a site for the Michigan State Spartans, North Carolina Tar Heels, and Ohio Buckeyes. Every story on each site was written by a robot, or to put it more precisely, by StatSheet’s content algorithms. “The posts are completely auto-generated,” says founder Robbie Allen. “The only human involvement is with creating the algorithms that generate the posts.”
I’m not sure if this is an indictment of sports journalism, which has been previously mentioned as being terrible, or if maybe if this is just way too much effort to tell me a team’s record before a game. Maybe this is a good thing. Instead of writing about and recounting the statistical details of a game, a gameday report can focus on the big points – what happened and what was important? What were the intangibles that changed the game?
Either way, I’m shocked it has taken this long for this to show up. How long before mainstream sites pick this up and apply it to the newsrooms. News companies would fire everyone if they could keep pumping out news and get away with it nowadays.
I know this, a robot can’t throw this into a post about sports. Randomly generate THIS in an algorithm pal!
Thanks to Jon Skulski