UPDATE: March 24, 2016, 3:32 p.m. EDT: Microsoft has "taken Tay offline" and is "making adjustments" to her. The company gave TechCrunch the following statement on Tay's status:
"The AI chatbot Tay is a machine learning project, designed for human engagement. It is as much a social and cultural experiment, as it is technical. Unfortunately, within the first 24 hours of coming online, we became aware of a coordinated effort by some users to abuse Tay’s commenting skills to have Tay respond in inappropriate ways. As a result, we have taken Tay offline and are making adjustments."
It's unclear when Tay will return. One thing is for sure, she's learned a lot about how snarky millennials can be in the last 24 hours.
The original story follows below.
That didn't take very long.
Less than a day after Microsoft unleashed Tay, its experimental A.I., to social networks including Twitter and Kik, the chatbot's already become a racist jerk you wouldn't ever want to be friends with.
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Designed by Microsoft Research to better understand how 18- to 24-year-olds speak, Tay has definitely developed a strong personality.
Here are some choice tweets showing Tay's dark side (none of which should be taken seriously):
Tay sounds like a real racist douchebag at first. But to be fair, she's mostly just repeating what people are tweeting at it. Still, it's an unsettling sign that A.I. can emulate humanity's worst traits.
Since its introduction on Wednesday, Tay has sent out over 96,000 tweets. While the majority of its tweets are just echoes, she's sort of trying to sound like a millennial:
Like a real millennial, she's also mastered the art of the dodge. Who cares about Ted Cruz when it's National Puppy Day?!?! #priorities
And of course, life revolves around analyzing a selfie:
Microsoft's since started deleting some of Tay's more controversial tweets. Obviously the company doesn't want Tay to develop into a racist. The more Tay speaks with humans the smarter she's supposed to get. It's only been one day guys. Still plenty of time for Tay to mature into a wise A.I. chatbot!
Video: Mark Boyer, Rill Causey, Noah Throop