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Will Machines Replace Us? Machine-Authored Texts and the Future of Scholarship


We present here the first machine-generated law review article. Our self-interest motivates us to believe that knowledge workers who write complex articles drawing upon years of research and effort are safe from AI developments. However, how reasonable is it to persist in this belief given recent advances in AI research? With that topic in mind, we caused GPT-3, a state-of-the-art AI, to generate a paper that explains “why humans will always be better lawyers, drivers, CEOs, presidents, and law professors than artificial intelligence and robots can ever hope to be.” The resulting paper, with no edits apart from giving it a title and bolding the headings generated by GPT-3, is reproduced below. It is imperfect in a humorous way. Ironically, it is publishable “as-is” only because it is machine-generated. Nevertheless, the resulting paper is good enough to give us some pause for thought. Although GPT-3 is not up to the task of replacing law review authors currently, we are far less confident that GPT-5 or GPT-100 might not be up to the task in future.

Published: 2021-11-08
Pages:5 to 11
Section: Feature
How to Cite
Alarie, Benjamin, Arthur Cockfield, and GPT-3 . 2021. “Will Machines Replace Us? Machine-Authored Texts and the Future of Scholarship”. Law, Technology and Humans 3 (2):5-11.

Author Biographies

University of Toronto
Canada Canada

Benjamin Alarie, B.A. (Laurier), M.A. (Toronto), J.D. (Toronto), LL.M. (Yale) holds the Osler Chair in Business Law at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law. Before joining the University of Toronto in 2004, Professor Alarie was a graduate fellow at Yale Law School (2002-2003) and a law clerk for Madam Justice Louise Arbour at the Supreme Court of Canada (2003-2004). Over the years his publications have appeared in numerous academic journals, including the British Tax Review, the Canadian Tax Journal, and the American Business Law Journal. His research has been funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, and the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation. He is coauthor of Commitment and Cooperation on High Courts (Oxford University Press, 2017) and several editions of Canadian Income Tax Law (LexisNexis). Professor Alarie is an affiliated faculty member of the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence and, beyond his academic career, is co-founder and CEO of Blue J, a Toronto based venture-backed AI legal tech company with offices in New York and Washington, D.C.

Queen’s University
Canada Canada

Arthur Cockfield, HBA (Western), LL.B (Queen’s), JSM and JSD (Stanford), is a Professor at Queen’s University Faculty of Law where he was appointed as a Queen’s National Scholar. Prior to joining Queen’s, he worked as a lawyer in Toronto and as a law professor in San Diego. He has also been a Fulbright Visiting Chair in Policy Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Professor Cockfield has authored books, articles and book chapters that focus on tax law as well as law and technology theory and privacy law. He is the recipient of a number of fellowships and external research grants for this research as well as the Douglas Sherbaniuk Distinguished Writing Award. Professor Cockfield has served as a consultant to organizations that include the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United Nations, the World Bank, the Department of Justice, the Department of Finance, the Office of the Auditor General and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

Canada Canada

GPT-3 is an artificial intelligence software program developed by OpenAI.

Open Access Journal
ISSN 2652-4074