I Forced a Bot to Read over 1,000 Papers from Open Access Journals and Then Asked It to Write a Paper of Its Own. Here Is the Result. Or, a Quasi-Materialist Approach to Bot-Mimicry

Critical Writing
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Year: 
2019
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Pages: 
114-126
Journal volume and issue: 
8.1
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CC Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike
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Abstract (in English): 

The article develops an approach for close reading of auto-generative writing agents (i.e. bots). It introduces the concept of bot-mimicry (a practice of writing in a bot-esque style), and argues that bot-mimicry inherently entails that reader and writer alike imagine a conceptual (fictional) bot which could have written the text. As such, it investigates the concept as a fruitful way of engaging with cultural, aesthetic and political conceptions and imaginaries surrounding bots. Furthermore, and through an example reading of the “Olive Garden tweet”, the paper develops, introduces and applies a quasi-materialist approach, where seemingly immaterial elements such as implicit conceptual bots are considered through a framework inspired by materialist media theory from the fields of software studies, media archaeology, and electronic
literature.

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Malthe Stavning...