sports illustrated ceo ross levinsohn fired after ai scandal, details inside
Sports Illustrated, an American sports magazine first published in August 1954, fired its CEO (Chief Executive Officer) after it was revealed that the magazine had published articles written by fake authors with AI (artificial intelligence).
The Arena Group, publisher of Sports Illustrated, announced on Monday that CEO Ross Levinsohn was fired after an AI scandal. His termination came after Futurism reported how Sports Illustrated had been publishing AI-generated articles under fake author profiles. The profile pictures of the authors were also generated using AI.
One source told Futurism, “The content is absolutely AI-generated, no matter how much they say that it’s not.” After the scandal, AI-generated author profiles were removed from the Sports Illustrated magazine.
Sports Illustrated CEO Ross Levinsohn fired after AI scandal
The Arena Group’s board fired Ross Levinsohn. The board named Manoj Bhargava as interim chief executive. The board members said that the decision was taken to “improve the operational efficiency and revenue of the company.”
However, they did not mention the AI scandal from November. Previously, the Arena Group, which acquired Sports Illustrated in 2019, denied the allegations of using AI to write articles. The group said it sourced commercial content from a third-party advertising company, AdVon Commerce.
Ross Levinsohn had served as the CEO of Sports Illustrated for three years. Last week, The Arena Group also fired three senior employees: operations president and chief operating officer Andrew Kraft, media president Rob Barrett, and corporate counsel Julie Fenster.
What’s the controversy?
An investigative report published by the science and technology news publication Futurism revealed that the magazine used AI-generated articles. The report said that author “Sora Tanaka”, who claims she is a product reviewer, is actually not a real individual.
Sora Tanaka’s author profile said, “Sora has always been a fitness guru, and loves to try different foods and drinks. Ms Tanaka is thrilled to bring her fitness and nutritional expertise to the Product Reviews Team.”
Futurism has alleged Tanaka is not a real person.