AI Generated Content Is Against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines

AI Generated Content

Have you been making use of AI generated content for your website? Saves time and money, right? But if you’re looking for website content to help your pages rank, you might be doing more harm than good.

Automatically generated content

Google’s Search Advocate, John Mueller has stated that web content generated using AI writing tools is against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and will be considered spam.

There’s been much debate among the SEO community about the use of AI writing tools. And this recent statement was made following a question during a Google Search Central SEO office-hours hangout. It was also acknowledged that the use of such tools can result in a manual penalty.

AI-Generated Content Is Against Google’s Guidelines

Mueller states that Google has been against automatically generated content as stated in the Webmaster Guidelines almost from the start. Check out what else he had to say:

“…If you’re using machine learning tools to generate your content, it’s essentially the same as if you’re just shuffling words around, or looking up synonyms, or doing the translation tricks that people used to do. Those kind of things.

My suspicion is maybe the quality of content is a little bit better than the really old school tools, but for us, it’s still automatically generated content, and that means for us it’s still against the Webmaster Guidelines. So we would consider that to be spam.”

Is it Possible to Detect AI-Generated Content?

Fear not though, it’s questionable whether Google can detect AI-generated content, without human intervention. There are no claims from Mueller that Google can tell the difference between AI or human written content. But it’s understood that if Google’s Webspam team discover such content they have the authorisation to take action. At present, there seems uncertainty as to how Google will adapt to the usage of AI writing tools with Mueller stating:

“And maybe over time, these AI tools will evolve in that direction that you use them to be more efficient in your writing or to make sure that you’re writing in a proper way like the spelling and the grammar checking tools, which are also based on machine learning. But I don’t know what the future brings there.”

What Does This Mean For Your Website?

At the moment it would appear that Google’s algorithms are unable to detect AI-generated content. It would seem this is a job for the Webspam team if such content is detected on their watch. AI content is nothing new but in recent years there has been a significant rise in the popularity of such tools that help content creators improve their writing and overcome language and literacy issues.

The irony is that while Google make heavy use of AI tools in 2022, it seems strange to punish the use of AI by content creators based on the idea of improving user experience.

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