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Why is the Snapchat AI chatbot concerning for some users?

As most people are aware, Snapchat is a multimedia messaging app that allows its users to send texts, photos, and videos that disappear within 24 hours. Snapchat announced having over 750 million users by February 2023. However, that number is now declining at a rapid pace over concerns of Snapchat secretly tracking users' locations. The "Delete Snapchat" search has increased by 488%. The app store reviews have been bombarded with one star review and criticism. Here's why-


Snapchat came up with the 'My AI' feature in February of this year. The feature was powered by ChatGPT. It was initially only available to premium users but then made available to all. What is odd now is that users now have to become premium members to be able to get rid of AI chat.


The Snapchat Chat feature that uses AI to respond to users' messages has faced criticism from both teenagers and their parents over privacy concerns. Many users have taken to social media platforms such as Twitter to share their experiences with the AI, claiming that the AI is gaslighting them. Some users have reported that the AI provides personalised recommendations for activities and restaurants based on their location, but when asked how it knows about their location, it claims not to know anything. This has raised concerns about the data privacy practices of the app, and whether or not the app is transparent about the information it collects from users. Users have also expressed concerns about the potential for their personal information to be leaked or misused by the AI system, and have called for greater transparency and control over their data. Snapchat has responded to these concerns by stating that they take privacy and data security seriously and that users can opt out of using the AI-powered chat feature if they prefer. Some users are even claiming that the AI seems to know their location even after disabling sharing their location on Snapchat.


Many users are concerned about how the 'My AI' feature responds to their snaps, especially images. It worries them how realistically the feature analyses their images and reacts to it accordingly. "I snapped a picture …and it said 'nice shoes' and asked who the people [were] in the photo," a Snapchat user wrote on Facebook.


Users need more data transparency, control, and protection against harmful or unsuitable information produced by AI, as well as stronger security measures. In response, Snapchat said that the company takes its users' privacy and data protection seriously and that users can choose not to use the AI-powered chat if they choose to.

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