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Midjourney art by Clark Miller
Midjourney art by Clark Miller

ChatGPT Is on Fire, and a Cottage Industry of Bot Builders Is Exploding Alongside It

But developers are left to wonder: What happens when OpenAI puts its red-hot conversational language model behind a paywall?

Dec. 16, 2022 10:00 AM PST

Joshua Browder wakes up most mornings wanting to empower the little guy. The entrepreneur, who has been deemed the “Robin Hood of the internet,” has helped people annul marriages, get out of parking tickets and file lawsuits against failed crypto platforms through DoNotPay, his robo lawyer startup.

DoNotPay works by automating the slow, convoluted process of navigating bureaucracy, writing letters, filing documents and chasing down discounts, compensation and restitution. But to date, it’s struggled to do anything beyond presenting prepackaged letters. Until now. “In the past six months, as AI technology has become better and better, that’s now unlocked for DoNotPay the ability to respond in real time to these legal issues,” Browder said. DoNotPay’s latest fillip? A real-time chatbot that piggybacks on ChatGPT, OpenAI’s blockbuster conversational language model, talking in real time to corporate help desks over chat, email and online forms.

On December 12, Browder tweeted a screen-capture video of DoNotPay’s ChatGPT bot in action as it negotiated a customer’s $10 per month discount on a Comcast internet bill. The DoNotPay bot took the queries from a (seemingly human) Comcast representative, ran them through ChatGPT in real time and responded with a conversation. “It’s really good,” Browder said. “I think consumer rights could be the first big use case of ChatGPT.”

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