Who Wrote This?: How AI and the Lure of Efficiency Threaten Human Writing


Product Details

$30.00  $27.90
Stanford University Press
Publish Date
5.98 X 9.06 X 1.18 inches | 1.37 pounds

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About the Author

Naomi S. Baron is Professor Emerita of Linguistics at American University. Her books include How We Read Now: Strategic Choices for Print, Screen, and Audio (2021), Words Onscreen: The Fate of Reading in a Digital World (2015), and Always On: Language in an Online and Mobile World (2008).


"Understanding the difference between AI- and human-written text is part of understanding what it means to be human. This fascinating book shows us how."--Natalia I. Kucirkova, author of Children Reading for Pleasure in the Digital Age
"This timely work interweaves wit and wisdom, laying bare the implications of why authorship matters, and astutely evaluating the gains and losses of partnering with AI. Informed decisions are key, and Baron empowers us to make them."--Lynne Bowker, author of De-mystifying Translation
"If you have ever wondered, in this age of chatbots and other hair-raising challenges posed by AI, where writing came from, where it's going, and who will benefit, Naomi S. Baron's Who Wrote This? offers a timely and incisive response."--Andrea Lunsford, author of Let's Talk
"Authoritative, insightful and a joy to read, Who Wrote This? is an invaluable source for everyone trying to understand what is happening to our modes of writing, and therefore thinking, in the time of AI."--Anne Mangen, Norwegian Reading Centre, University of Stavanger
"In this must-read book, Naomi S. Baron takes a broad historical and philosophical perspective on our rapid implementation of AI. With her customary rigor, Baron examines AI's potential, but also explores the unintended consequences of its uncritical adoption."--Adriaan van der Weel, author of Changing Our Textual Minds
"There is no question who wrote this--a lesson in itself to the reader. Who but the prolific Naomi S. Baron can bring a linguistic analysis, a philosophical scalpel, and historical breadth to some of the most difficult questions about the very purpose of written language for the future of humanity?"--Maryanne Wolf, author of Reader, Come Home
"Who Wrote This? is unique in bringing together linguistics and AI in a confident and illuminating way, adeptly deconstructing techie accounts in plain English. I've never seen anything like it. A book for anyone professionally or amateurly involved in writing."--David Crystal, author of Internet Linguistics
"Addressing the fluency and fabrications of chatbots based on large language models, Baron dispels the hype and roots AI writing in a long history of efforts to automate thought and its evaluation. Insightful and witty, comprehensive and entertaining."--Frank Pasquale, author of The Black Box Society
"Naomi S. Baron's timely, insightful, and carefully documented account of the history and current state of AI text generation focuses on two essential themes: writers have always depended on technology, and machines will never replace writers."--Dennis Baron, author of You Can't Always Say What You Want