Northern Michigan University Philosophy Professor Antony Aumann was a guest on the May 16 episode of Dr. Phil on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN), titled “Artificial Intelligence: Too Smart for Our Own Good?” He was interviewed from NMU during the show, which also featured a studio panel of experts. Aumann shared his story, which has generated international media coverage, of reading a paper submitted in his class that appeared too well-written based on the student's previous performance. When Aumann questioned the real source, the student admitted the content was generated by an AI app.
“This one was a cut and paste from ChatGPT,” Aumann told Dr. Phil. “The red flag was that the essay was just a little bit too good. We mere mortals make mistakes with spelling or thought, and there was nothing wrong with this essay; it was amazing. That was the initial red flag. So I took the student's essay and I pasted it into ChatGPT and I said, ‘Hey did you write this?' It came back and said there was a 99.9% chance that it did write it.” The fact the app ratted on itself generated laughter from the studio audience.
When Dr. Phil asked Aumann if he has since told students they can use ChatGPT, but not “straight-up copy it,” Aumann replied:
“We actually voted as a class about what our policy should be; whether we should forbid it all together or whether it should be the Wild Wild West, where whatever you want goes. I'm surprised by the number of students who wanted to go with the Wild Wild West option, partly because they thought the checkers we have for detecting it aren't very reliable as of yet. Even if I wanted to forbid it, there's not really a good way yet for me to police it.”