OpenAI Will Mix ‘Authentic’ Reddit Content Into Its AI Training Data

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OpenAI will train its AI model on content from social discussion platform Reddit, the two companies jointly announced on Thursday. Reddit declared itself “an important space for conversation on the internet,” and said the agreement will expand the range of material in OpenAI’s large language model (LLM) while helping it enhance its user experience.

“This partnership will also enable Reddit to bring new AI-powered features to redditors and mods,” the company explained, while OpenAI will “better understand and showcase Reddit content, especially on recent topics.”

Following the announcement, shares in Reddit (RDDT) briefly spiked more than 14% in after-hours trading. Shares in the company started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on March 21.

In a footnote at the end of its blog post about the deal, OpenAI noted that its CEO Sam Altman is a shareholder in Reddit. The AI giant also noted that the agreement was spearheaded by Brad Lightcap, OpenAI chief operating officer, and approved by its independent board of directors.

“Reddit has become one of the internet’s largest open archives of authentic, relevant, and always up-to-date human conversations about anything and everything,” Reddit co-founder and CEO Steve Huffman said in a statement. “Including it in ChatGPT upholds our belief in a connected internet, helps people find more of what they’re looking for, and helps new audiences find community on Reddit.”

According to Reddit, OpenAI will pull Reddit content into ChatGPT and other unnamed products using Reddit’s Data API. The partnership will also allow Reddit to develop new AI features using OpenAI’s technology and meanwhile make OpenAI a Reddit advertising partner.

“We are thrilled to partner with Reddit to enhance ChatGPT with uniquely timely and relevant information, and to explore the possibilities to enrich the Reddit experience with AI-powered features,” Lightcap said in a statement.

OpenAI declined further on the partnership. Reddit did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Decrypt.

The deal between OpenAI and Reddit comes the same week that both OpenAI and Google made several high profile announcements surrounding their respective AI tools.

On Monday, OpenAI released updates to ChatGPT, including a new, faster model called GPT-4o. On Tuesday, during the annual Google I/O event, Google highlighted several new AI-powered features under its Gemini brand, including expanded features for its suite of workplace tools.

The OpenAI deal is not the first one in which Reddit leveraged its extensive library of discussion and debate. In February, Reddit inked a deal with rival AI developer Google, giving the tech giant access to its extensive library of content. The partnership subsequently triggered an investigation by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Reddit disclosed the following month.

“The FTC’s staff is conducting a non-public inquiry focused on our sale, licensing, or sharing of user-generated content with third parties to train AI models,” Reddit stated in the filing. “We do not believe that we have engaged in any unfair or deceptive trade practice.”

News of the deal between OpenAI and Reddit did not sit well with many on social media, many commenters critical of the more provocative and controversial communities on the site.

“The hivemind of Reddit are a bunch of basement-dwelling, unemployed socialists,” Trustswap CEO Jeff Kirdeikis wrote on Twitter. “If you thought [OpenAI] was biased before…”

“Glad to know that search is coming with a Reddit filter,” Technology educator Paul Couvert said.

“Misinformation and bias galore,” writer and Entrepreneur Che Rodney said. “This is a disaster waiting to happen.”

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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