Many online articles these days are not written by humans – rather they are written by writing bots, giving rise to the term ‘robot journalism’. Of course, these aren’t actual robots, rather it is a software program, programmed to synthesize data and spit out articles.
By now just about everyone has heard the story of the “Bush shoe thrower” – the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President Bush, and called him a “dog”, while Bush was talking at a press conference in Baghdad. Muntadhar al-Zaidi threw both his shoes and the epithet at Bush before denouncing him as having brought death and sorrow to Iraq as a result of six years of war. What is amazing about this story – among other things – is how quickly that incident made it around the world. And that is because of the Internet.