Snapchat’s My AI feature, an in-app AI chatbot launched earlier this year with its fair share of controversy, briefly appeared to have a mind of its own. On Tuesday, the AI posted its own Story to the app and then stopped responding to users’ messages, which some Snapchat Users found disconcerting, TechCrunch reported.
The Story My AI posted was just a two-toned image that some mistook to be a photo of their own ceiling, which added to the mystery. When users tried to chat with the bot, the AI in some cases replied to users by saying “Sorry, I encountered a technical issue.”
According to TechCrunch, though the incident made for some great posts, we regret to inform you that My AI did not develop self-awareness and a desire to express itself through Snapchat Stories. Instead, the situation arose because of a technical outage, just as the bot explained.
“My AI experienced a temporary outage that’s now resolved,” a spokesperson told TechCrunch.
However, the incident does raise the question as to whether or not Snap was considering adding new functionality to My AI that would allow the AI chatbot to post to Stories. Currently, the AI bot sends text messages and can even Snap back with images – weird as they may be. But does it do Stories? Not yet, apparently.
“At this time, My AI does not have Stories feature,” a Snap spokesperson told TechCrunch, leaving them to wonder if that may be something Snap has in the works.
ArsTechnica reported: It’s not Halloween yet, but some users of Snapchat feel like it is. On Tuesday evening, Snapchat’s My AI chatbot posted a mysterious one-second video of what looks like a wall and a ceiling, despite never having added a video to its messages before. When users asked the chatbot about it, the machine stayed eerily silent.
According to ArsTechnica, “My AI” is a chatbot built into the Snapchat app that people can talk to as if it were a real person. It’s powered by OpenAI’s large language model (LLM) technology, similar to ChatGPT. It shares clever quips and recommends Snapchat features in a way that makes it feel like a corporate imitation of a trendy young person chillin with its online homies.
Mashable reported that when reached for a comment, a Snap spokesperson confirmed that My AI had experienced an outage, but that it had been since resolved.
According to Mashable, the issue was not resolved immediately, as My AI temporarily continued to respond to at least some users’ text messages with: “Hey, I’m a bit busy at the moment. Can we catch up later?” However others soon reported that the My AI chatbot was back online, allowing them to question it about its strange story.
Personally, I think this situation is mostly harmless – despite freaking out some Snapchat users. That said, I can see why people had concerns after My AI appeared to post a photo of their wall and ceiling. There is something unnatural about having an AI bot post an image in a section of Snapchat that it wasn’t intended to use.