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How To Spot AI Poetry

A follow-up to How To Spot AI

By Ashley LimaPublished 12 months ago β€’ Updated 12 months ago β€’ 4 min read
Top Story - August 2023
How To Spot AI Poetry
Photo by Aideal Hwa on Unsplash

I wrote an article called How To Spot AI about 4 weeks ago, and I realized that I focused only on nonfiction writing. With AI continuing to incorporate itself into everyday life and mingling suspiciously undetected in the fiction and poetry communities, I've decided to follow up with tips and tricks on how to detect AI poetry.

I'll reiterate a few key points from my last article for those who have not read it. AI is allowed on Vocal, but its use needs to be clearly labeled. Failure to provide a disclaimer can and will often result in suspension from the platform. If you want to avoid that happening, just put a disclaimer. If you think you can slip through the cracks, it's only a matter of time.

You can read the provided resource here:

AI-generated content on Vocal should be labeled clearly as such. This labeling should be included at the beginning of the content itself as well as in any accompanying materials, whether it be links to AI-generated content or AI-generated images within the story. All AI-generated content should also be clearly attributed to the AI software that generated it. If you dabble with AI-generated content on Vocal, it is important to also be aware of the potential for copyright infringement.

Let's get into it, shall we?

1. AABB Rhyme Scheme

Every single AI poem I've ever seen follows this uber-specific format. That being said, it doesn't mean that every AABB rhyme scheme poem on Vocal is AI-generated. Let's have a look at some work from ChatGPT.

Prompt: Write me a poem about the sounds that bugs make in the summer with themes of nostalgia and fond memories.

In summer's embrace, beneath the sun's warm caress,

The symphony of bugs, a timeless duet, no less.

Their tiny voices weave a tapestry of sound,

A nostalgic melody in memories unbound.

-

Cicadas hum a chorus, a rhythmic summer song,

As memories of childhood dance and play along.

Their ceaseless buzz, a lullaby to lazy days,

In fields of gold, where time forever sways.

-

Fireflies twinkle in the twilight's tender gleam,

Like lanterns of nostalgia, they softly beam.

Their fleeting waltz, a dance of dreams gone by,

Ignites the heart with joy that will never die.

-

The crickets join the chorus with their tender trill,

A night's embrace, a longing that they instill.

Their serenade recalls nights beneath the stars,

When worries faded and we forgot our scars.

-

Oh, the sounds of bugs in summer's sweet embrace,

A symphony that time cannot erase.

Nostalgia's gentle breeze, a fond memory's call,

In the bug-filled nights, we find solace above all.

Without fail, every stanza has an AABB rhyme scheme with exactly 4 lines per stanza. Let's dig deeper.

2. Repetition

As I stated in the previous article, repetition can certainly be done artfully, but when AI does it, it tends to be redundant and lack depth.

I'm going to reference the same poem as above, but we're going to highlight the repeated words/phrases in bold.

In summer's embrace, beneath the sun's warm caress,

The symphony of bugs, a timeless duet, no less.

Their tiny voices weave a tapestry of sound,

A nostalgic melody in memories unbound.

-

Cicadas hum a chorus, a rhythmic summer song,

As memories of childhood dance and play along.

Their ceaseless buzz, a lullaby to lazy days,

In fields of gold, where time forever sways.

-

Fireflies twinkle in the twilight's tender gleam,

Like lanterns of nostalgia, they softly beam.

Their fleeting waltz, a dance of dreams gone by,

Ignites the heart with joy that will never die.

-

The crickets join the chorus with their tender trill,

A night's embrace, a longing that they instill.

Their serenade recalls nights beneath the stars,

When worries faded and we forgot our scars.

-

Oh, the sounds of bugs in summer's sweet embrace,

A symphony that time cannot erase.

Nostalgia's gentle breeze, a fond memory's call,

In the bug-filled nights, we find solace above all.

Summer - x3, Bug - x3, Nostalgia - x2, Night - x3, Memories - x2

What do all of these words have in common? I used them in the prompt.

Not only that, but "summer's embrace," "night's embrace," and "summer's sweet embrace," were used all within the span of 5 stanzas.

3. Lack of personality

Sure, the AI did what I told it to do, but it lacks the depth that a human brings to their creations. It employs metaphors, but it's also worded quite strangely.

Things that stick out to me as abnormal are: "a timeless duet, no less," "a longing that they instill," and "a fond memory's call."

Where is the human perspective here? It's capturing these ideas, but there's something personal missing.

4. What now?

AI poetry is notoriously difficult to spot and AI checkers may not always be accurate. The fewer words in a piece, the more likely work is to be flagged due to insufficient inputs, so legitimate work can be shot in the crossfire. Use your best judgment and engage with caution.

Some things that set off red flags for myself and many others are creators that post in rapid succession. Do all of their poems have the same format? Are they posting 5+ pieces daily within minutes of each other? They might be using AI to produce their work.

I'm going to reiterate, Vocal allows AI on the platform, but it must be properly labeled. I don't care what you want to do with your free time but follow the rules of the website.

For some tips on spotting AI in Fiction, check out Judey Kalchik's fun game, AINGO here:

how tofuturefact or fiction

About the Creator

Ashley Lima

I think about writing more than I write, but call myself a writer as opposed to a thinker.

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Comments (42)

  • Fly Alone22 days ago

    Your article on detecting AI-generated poetry is insightful and timely, addressing a growing concern within the creative community. By breaking down key indicators like the AABB rhyme scheme, repetition, and lack of personal depth, you offer practical tools for readers to distinguish between human and AI-created works. Your emphasis on the importance of proper labeling on platforms ensures transparency and maintains the integrity of the content. Excellent work!

  • shanmuga priya2 months ago

    Congratulations πŸŽ‰

  • Esala Gunathilake2 months ago

    Congratulations on your top story.

  • Zoya Shah4 months ago

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  • Rowan Finley 5 months ago

    AI is a pandemic 😷

  • Sandra Matos5 months ago

    Very interesting. Thank you for sharing this information!

  • Gina C.5 months ago

    This is defintely a very interesting read, Ashley! (By the way, I swore I read this months ago - I guess I just never commented!) Thank you so much for sharing your findings regarding AI poetry. Definitely something we all need to keep an eye out for!

  • Daphsam7 months ago

    Thank you for sharing, this is fascinating.

  • Andrea Corwin 8 months ago

    Thanks for writing this and sharing it. For one, I don't think the AI writing should be allowed as a submission. Within something, clearly labeled, or a photo, also labeled, sure. If Vocal is a WRITING platform, then it should be authored by a person. AI can go another platform, or Vocal can create a COMMUNITY strictly for AI generated pieces. My opinon.

  • Carol Townend10 months ago

    Thank you for this. I find it really useful, and yes I don't like the way AI generates poetry either.

  • Yusuf Alam10 months ago

    πŸ’― Wow, this is awesome! πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ‘Œ

  • Jack Thompson10 months ago

    Ai is great

  • Thank you for sharing this

  • Marilyn Glover11 months ago

    This is excellent! I am an editor for a few Medium publications and I have recently had suspicions about a few poems I came across as being AI-generated. We do not accept AI content and I am finding that, as you stated, detecting this in poetry is tricky. I do understand why some writers use it, although I am not a fan. But in poetry, now this especially hits me hard as it is my first love of writing. Well done!!! ❀️

  • Jenifer Nim12 months ago

    Great story! I completely agree with what others have said below. I try not to read any AI writing if I can help it...It's frustrating that so much is being spewed out. I take comfort in the fact that many people all across the internet are saying they've noticed how famous AI tools are actually getting worse and not better... I've seen people say they can no longer write simple code or do maths problems that they could do before. That's not to mention how boring and repetitive the stories and poetry are, or the formulaic and often factually incorrect non-fiction it produces.

  • Heidi McCloskey12 months ago

    Great article! As someone who is relatively new here and is once again dipping my feet back into writing after years of neglecting what I used to enjoy so much, I find it extremely frustrating to see what is so obviously AI making top story. This happened recently and I noticed that after someone commented (I think it was Judy) the author of the AI story blocked comments. Yes, we should be vigilant, but I would think the powers that be who choose what is considered top story should be a little more so as well. Just my opinion. Anyway, thank you for an important piece.

  • Nitu Gupta12 months ago

    Nice article, πŸ‘ congratulation on top story. https://vocal.media/journal/the-following-are-15-self-start-venture-thoughts-for-2023 Please share and support my story. πŸ™

  • Krysta Dawn12 months ago

    I've noticed the repetition myself. I just don't get why people want to use AI to write poetry. The whole point of poetry is to be creative. That'd be like me framing a famous painting and saying I created it. It's just sad that so many people are too lazy to be creative and would rather use AI. I guess they don't realize without new material to feed AI, there's nothing for AI to put out either. Great post!

  • The rhyme scheme didn't really faze me but the repetition did. I didn't realise those were the words from your prompt until you pointed it out. Lately, I've seen a lot of poems with the word symphony in it and it's been repeated so many times, to the point that I'm sick of that word, lol! I can't recall whether it's the same writer. Thank you so much for sharing this!

  • Tiffany Gordon 12 months ago

    Thx for sharing your insights! I feel better prepared now!

  • It is amazing what AI can do, but as you state, it does have its limits. I found this out on articles posted on LinkedIn. I kept being asked to provide my insights on articles as an "expert". Then I realized they were all AI generated articles and basically us humans needed to add the human element you discuss to make it more lively. Congratulations on Top Story!

  • Melissa Ingoldsby12 months ago

    I love how you spotted these insights for Ai poetry so adeptly. πŸ‘Œβ€οΈ*chefs kiss* excellent work!!

  • Test12 months ago

    Wow, My natural poetry style is the AABB four line staza. :( I hope AI changes it's sytle

  • Kendall Defoe 12 months ago

    Okay, I like this list. I will be marking papers that I am sure with be under the thumb of an AI system, and this gives me a few pointers to consider. Thank you!

Ashley LimaWritten by Ashley Lima

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