IPRS Panel – Preparing for Disruption in an AI Future

IPRS Panel – Preparing for Disruption in an AI Future

Artificial Intelligence(AI) and similar technologies — Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning, etc. — have found their way into almost every industry, with benefits too valuable to be ignored. The communications industry is no exception. IPRS organized a panel discussion on the hot topic of an AI future which saw close to a full house at SGInnovate on a Friday night.

The panel was moderated by Wong Voal Voal, Managing Partner at IN.FOM, and joining him was Illka Gobius, Managing Director at PINPOINT PR, Chris Lu, Regional Head of Communications at AnyMind Group, and Verdayne Nunis, Chief of Staff at Microsoft Asia. Wong Voal Voal kicked off the discussion by posing several key questions which framed the session – Would AI truly make communicators better, or marginalize the profession? Would AI take away jobs eventually?

The communications world today is already reaping benefits from AI, both tactically and strategically. Automated research and media monitoring capabilities have brought about time savings, with large news agencies generating automated content through AI. As pointed out by Illka Gobius, public relations require intellect and AI is able to give us a lot more insight into what communicators do.

AI can transform the way people work with data and with each other as shared by the speakers. The improved access to information could potentially enable communicators to make more informed decisions in areas such as content development and media strategies. Sentiment analysis is being used by companies globally to monitor opinions and attitudes towards their brands and products. While data is readily available, it is the analysts who ultimately contribute to generating actionable insights.

Common misconceptions of AI as highlighted by Verdayne Nunis can contribute to resistance in its adoption. Consumer perception of applications and their ability to learn about personal choices and preferences is often misconstrued to be an invasion of privacy or theft of personal data, when in fact is simply a part of machine learning. Ethics is also area of concern for some, as highlighted through participants during the question and answer session.

Personally, I think that technology has long been a driving factor behind making communications more far-reaching. However, more recent technologies are radically changing that again, with the ability to refine, reform and revolutionize. Ultimately, I believe that traditional communications objectives remain the same but technology can change the way we get there.

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(From left) Wong Voal Voal, Illka A Gobius, Chris Lu and Verdayne Nunis, sharing and discussing on preparing for disruption in AI future for communicators.

Members and guests of IPRS at SGInnovate for the panel discussion on AI in PR jointly organised by the IPRS and SGInnovate.

(From left) Koh Juat Muay (IPRS Member), Susie Wee (Council Member), Robert Conceicao (IPRS President), Mike Liew (IPRS Vice President) and the panel.

This article was contributed by Amelia Wee, Regional Communications and Marketing Manager, United Technologies Corporation – Climate, Controls & Security and IPRS Intro to PR & Mass Comm participant.