AI-Generated Content Detection: Ways to Identify ChatGPT Text

Written by:
Mohammed Wasim Akram
First Published on:
January 25, 2023
Last Updated on:
January 27, 2023
Post Categories:
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Artificial Intelligence (AI) has highly evolved in recent years. As a result, it has become a challenging task to identify whether a piece of content was written by a real human or an Artificial Intelligence tool like ChatGPT.

However, the good thing is that still there are several useful approaches and powerful AI content detection tools available for detecting AI-generated text content, but in this article, I'll go through some of the most effective manual methods.

I'll also provide the necessary examples and suggestions to educate you in recognizing whether or not a piece of writing was actually composed by an AI-powered language model technology.

And I hope by the end of this post, you are going to have a deeper understanding of how to spot AI-generated text content and evaluate the reliability of the information you come across on the internet and in real life.

Also, these methods would be truly helpful for content creators like you and me who use AI writing tools for assistance and speed up the process while creating helpful content with AI to make it trustworthy and reliable.

Because I believe there is nothing wrong with using these powerful technologies for the benefit of other people, but the only condition is to not misuse them for nefarious and destructive purposes.

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Find Official Disclaimer

The easiest and almost nonexistent method to detect AI-generated content is when it is clearly labeled as being produced by someone using the power of the Artificial intelligence system.

Hence, if you come across an article on a website over the internet that is officially tagged as being written by GPT-3 or another AI writing tool, it is obvious that it was generated by an AI.

For example, a few major brands, such as CNET, have begun to use AI to produce a significant amount of their content, and Google isn't penalizing them for it.

However, since most websites and brands are still not clearly labeled their content as AI-generated, it is also crucial for you to use other methods for identifying AI-generated text that I am going to share with you throughout this article.

Inaccurate Factual Data

One of the most important methods to identify AI-generated written content is through inaccurate facts and data. Machines make mistakes because they gather information from various sources.

For example, if you're reading an article on a recent event and the facts in the article contradict what you know to be true, the content was most likely produced with an AI.

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One of the reasons for this is that AI algorithms are trained to guess numbers based on patterns, which may not always be completely accurate.

For example, if a computer program is attempting to predict the number of people who will attend a concert, then it might make its prediction considering data from previous events.

Whereas if the concert is a new event with little to no available information, the tool's forecast would be far less accurate.

Another factor to keep in mind is that the language models, including such as ChatGPT, have a knowledge cut-off date.

In this example, the knowledge cutoff is 2021, which suggests it has no knowledge of events or facts after that date. So, if you're reading a story about something that happened after 2021, you can rest assured that it wasn't created by ChatGPT or other GPT models.

To summarize, language models like ChatGPT are restricted by their knowledge cut-off date, and their predictions are based on patterns rather than facts and evidence.

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Therefore, if you are leveraging the power of AI to produce content then it is crucial to double-check the information presented in the AI-generated text content with other reliable sources in order to make it more humanized and reliable.

Check for Grammatical Errors

Grammatical mistakes are one area to hunt for when searching for AI-generated writing. Since AI is not perfectly capable of comprehending a language's grammatical structure, the text it creates may contain errors. 

This is also the case with most non-native or even some native speakers by the way, but let's talk about AI in this case instead of talking about our grammar skills.

Also on the other hand there are some great AI-powered tools like Grammarly and Quillbot which can help you fix grammatical mistakes in your writing which is ironic.

Here are some examples of grammatical problems in AI-generated text:

  • Incorrect verb tense: An AI-generated phrase may state "I walk to the store" rather than "I walked to the store."
  • Misplaced or missing punctuation: An AI-generated phrase would state "I went to the store to buy some milk but I also picked up some bread and eggs" instead of "I went to the store, to buy some milk, but I also picked up some bread and eggs."
  • Incorrect subject-verb agreement: An AI-generated phrase may state "The dog bark loudly" rather than "The dog barks loudly."
  • Incorrect capitalization: An AI-generated statement may say "i'm going to the store" rather than "I'm going to the store."

It's important to keep in mind that some AI-generated work may be free of grammatical mistakes since it was proofread and corrected by a human before publishing. If you come across content that has a significant number of grammatical issues, it's a good bet that it might have been created through an AI.

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Check for Plagiarism

Plagiarism is one of the most important factors to look for when identifying AI-generated writing. Plagiarism occurs when someone steals another person's work and represents it as their own.

In the scenario of AI-generated text, it is conceivable that the AI combined text from multiple sources to generate a new piece of content. You could use plagiarism checker tools like Originality and Quillbot to check for piracy.

These are software applications that scan billions of web pages and compare your text to determine whether it exists on any other web pages.

Here are some examples of how plagiarism checkers work:

  • You can paste the text into the software, and it will search the internet for matching items.
  • Some plagiarism checkers can also detect plagiarism in documents like Microsoft Word or PDF files.
  • Some plagiarism detection software can even extract textual information from images.

That being said, plagiarism checkers are not foolproof and may not recognize every occurrence of plagiarism.

However, they can be a valuable tool in detecting AI-generated writing. Also, keep in mind that AI-generated information may be a compilation of numerous sources, which may not be classified as plagiarism but is not original.

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Incomprehensive & Incomplete Sentences

When trying to detect AI-generated text content, one thing to look out for is incomplete sentences. As AI technology is still developing, language models like ChatGPT are not yet able to produce fully comprehensive and complete sentences like a human would.

Here are a few examples of what to look for when trying to spot incomplete sentences:

  • Sentences that open strongly but eventually fade away without a proper conclusion.
  • Sentences that have little or no a particular topic or a prepositional phrase.
  • Sentences that are extremely weak and insufficient in information.

If you come across a blog post that appears to be lacking critical information or includes sentences that don't make sense, it might be an indication that the article was made with an AI.

"The product is ground-breaking. It will impact how you do things." This statement is complete; however, it lacks precise details or information on the product.

Whereas a human-written sentence might read "The new product is a game-changer in the business; it incorporates XYZ technology that allows you to accomplish ABC tasks efficiently and effectively."

It's worthwhile to note that, while these examples are straightforward, it's likely to be more difficult to identify incomplete phrases in many circumstances.

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However, if you come across an article or piece of writing that appears to be missing essential information or just does not make sense, this might be a hint that it was created by an AI.

However, it's important to understand that not all incomplete sentences are an indicator of AI-produced content as it could be written by a newbie writer, but if you find multiple examples in a single piece of content, it's worth considering whether the content was generated by an AI.

Repetitive Words & Phrases

Look for repetition of terms and phrases to determine AI-generated text. This is considered to be caused by the AI attempting to fill space with specific keywords but lacking a thorough understanding of the subject. 

An AI-generated blog article discussing the advantages of digital marketing could repeat the word "digital marketing" repeatedly throughout the article rather than utilizing synonyms or variations.

As an example, consider the beginning of a blog on digital marketing. Instead of utilizing terms like "internet marketing" or "online marketing," an AI-generated introduction may repeat the phrase "digital marketing" multiple times.

It's important to understand that repeating words and phrases aren't necessarily concrete proof of AI-generated text since some human writers may repeat words and phrases for strong focus or to emphasize a point. Repetition, however, can be a red flag when combined with other symptoms of AI-generated material, such as unfinished sentences or inconsistencies. However, if the article has keyword stuffing, it's a pretty good indication that it was created using AI.

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Incoherence & Inconsistency

Another indicator of AI-generated text is a lack of consistency in the writing. This is noticeable when the writing jumps from one topic to the next without any logical relationship.

For example, in a blog post about the benefits of blogging, an AI-generated article may begin by explaining the benefits of SEO-friendly articles before but then unexpectedly switch to explaining the benefits of social media content with no obvious transition or connection between the two topics.

This lack of coherence could also be visible in the writing style, as when the AI is incapable of understanding and analyzing the context of the article topic and delivering relevant information, which could happen due to many reasons including but not limited to poor prompts engineering.

Therefore, if you're a blogger or content creator that is using or planning to use AI models to generate high-quality content, then well-crafted prompts are necessary. And if you want to learn the process of crafting the best prompt, then you must check our other blog post.

When looking for a lack of coherence, keep the following key points in mind:

  • Look for a logical and structured flow of ideas.
  • Check if the writing stays on a topic or wanders to unrelated topics.
  • Look for a seamless transition between topics.
  • Analyze the text to see whether it contains relevant information.
  • Look for a thorough comprehension of the topic.

The essential thing to keep in mind is that AI-generated work may lack consistency and a sufficient comprehension of the context. As a result, it may deliver insufficient information and may hop from one subject to another with no correlation.

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Lack of Nuance & Sentiment

Another technique to spot AI-generated text content is to check for an absence of nuance and sentiment. Since AI cannot recognize and interpret feelings and emotions in the same way that humans could, the content it generates may sometimes seem robotic or lacking in substance.

For example, consider a product review written by artificial intelligence. A human-written review may include words and expressions like "incredible" or "appreciate" to express excitement or enthusiasm for a product. In comparison, an AI-generated review may just provide facts about the product without expressing any true opinion or emotion.

In another particular example, in a blog post about a sensitive topic such as mental health, a human-written post might indeed express empathy and understanding for the reader's feelings and experiences, whereas an AI-generated post may simply list facts about the topic without demonstrating any real understanding of the readers' emotions.

Another sign to check for is a lack of tone fluctuation. Because AI cannot recognize the context of the topics, it may use the same tone throughout the writing, whether the topic is serious or lighthearted. As a result, the text may appear flat and monotonous.

Therefore, examining for a lack of nuance, mood, and tone change can help pinpoint AI-generated sentences or paragraphs.

Check for Human-Like Language

One of the easiest ways to identify AI-generated writing is by analyzing if the text contains more human-like language or not as AI may not be capable to include idiomatic words or idiomatic expressions that are commonly used in everyday conversations by humans.

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For example, an AI-generated text may read "I'm in a good mood" rather than "I'm feeling great," which is more natural and human-like language.

Another example could be an AI-generated statement that says, "I had a great time at the party and met many interesting individuals." While a human-written statement may read, "I had a blast at the party and met some real faces!"

Here are some instances of how AI-generated writing may lack human-like language:

  • Idiomatic: An AI-generated sentence would read "The ball is in your court" instead of the idiomatic expression "It's your move."
  • Humor: An AI-generated joke may be appropriately formed, but it lacks the subtlety and timing that makes a joke humorous to a human.
  • Sarcasm: It may not be able to understand or use sarcasm, which can cause misunderstanding or misinterpretation.
  • Colloquialisms: It may not be able to adopt colloquialisms or informal language that is often used in normal conversation.
  • Cultural References: It may be unable to understand or integrate cultural references that are relevant to the audience, resulting in confusion or confusion.

Artificial Intelligence is becoming better at adopting human-like language now than ever, which makes it more difficult to recognize AI-generated content. However, through scanning for these patterns, you could determine if the content was produced by a human or an AI.

Lack of Personalization

One notable aspect to look for when finding AI-generated content is a lack of personalization. AI models may be ineffective in tailoring language or tone to a specific person or group.

For example, if you're reading a customer support email that feels impersonal and generic, it's possible that it was written by an AI. Similarly, if you're reading a blog article that doesn't directly address the reader or uses real experiences or events, it's possible that it's been generated with an AI.

Here are a few examples of how a lack of personalization in AI-generated content could show up:

  • An email from the help desk opens with "Dear valued customer," rather than addressing the customer by name.
  • A blog post that does not mention the words "you" or "your" to address the reader.
  • An email newsletter that doesn't mention the name of the subscriber to establish a connection.

I want to make it clear that not all AI-generated content will lack personalization, and not all personalized writing seems to be crafted by a human. However, it might be a sign that the text was written by artificial intelligence.

Find Missing Creativity

One thing to check for when detecting AI-generated text is a lack of creativity. Because AI is unable to properly understand and analyze the context of the text, it may struggle to generate original, creative ideas.

For example, an AI-generated article on "social media marketing" may just provide a series of basic suggestions and techniques without providing any unique insights or innovative ways.

A human-written article on the same topic, on the other hand, may provide a more personal viewpoint, reflecting on the author's own experiences and experimenting with new ideas.

In terms of unique and creative language, AI-generated writing may choose generic words and phrases that are regularly used in the situation at hand.

For example, an AI-generated blog article on a new product may have a lot of industry jargon and buzzwords but no genuinely innovative or special product descriptions.

Also, AI text may be poor in storytelling aspects such as anecdotes or metaphors. An AI-generated case study.

For example, may simply give the facts and statistics of a project without any personal experiences or examples to highlight the outcome.

Moreover, the AI-generated piece may lack personal experiences, humor, or other elements that can make the text more engaging and relatable.

Conclusion

Recognizing AI-generated written information might be getting more difficult as technology progresses.

However, by combining AI-content identification technologies along with your own reasoning and judgment, you may be more confident in detecting whether or not the content was produced by an AI writing application like ChatGPT which is a powerhouse.

Additionally, scanning for technical indications in text content such as repetition of words and phrases, lack of insight, and incomplete or inaccurate data might assist in spotting AI-generated content.

Remember, especially in this era of fast technological innovation, it's absolutely essential to remain skeptical and fact-check any information you come across.

Always keep a close watch for any red flags which might suggest that the information was written by AI-powered software rather than a human, especially if you are a business owner or content creator leveraging AI content generation tools or outsourcing and delegating content production tasks to others.

This will ensure that your content is high-quality, reliable, and trustworthy and not some low-quality and non-valuable piece of content that can hamper your business reputation and relationship with your audience.

However, if you don't want to spend all the time identifying AI-powered content but rather you're more interested in tools to detect AI-generated content then consider checking our other blog post on this topic.

Plus if you're curious to learn how to leverage AI tools like ChatGPT to produce content and still make the content humanize and undetectable then must check this article.

In the end, if you consider this article a valuable and useful resource, then don't forget to share it with your community and colleagues as well as share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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