Bloomberg on automated business news stories
Michael Bloomberg appeared on “60 Minutes” on Sunday night, and he talked briefly about how his company’s media operation is beginning to use computers to help tell stories.
Bloomberg showed Steve Kroft an example of a story about Snap Inc. that was computer generated.
“We want the reporters to analyze the data,” said Bloomberg. “We want the reporters to make calls and develop sources and pull information together. Just taking information out of databases is a waste of reporter’s time.”
Here is the transcript:
BLOOMBERG: OK, here’s a stock report, and if you look, it’ll tell you a lot of things that are happening. But what’s interesting is every bit of that information is in the public domain.
And this story was written as you watched it come up. This story was written by a computer.
What the computer did is it went and took the last share price of Snap and where it closed the night before and it calculated a percentage and it said it fell 4.3 percent. It went to another database to find out what the S&P is doing, it went and looked at what the analysts had said, and it does this tens of thousands of times a day. At any time.
But that’s the future of information, where there’s no intellectual content added by the reporter. You can have a computer do it.
We want the reporters to analyze the data. We want the reporters to make calls and develop sources and pull information together. Just taking information out of databases is a waste of reporter’s time.
BLOOMBERG: And this is the way everybody’s going.