Can AI Create Content That Meets Google’s E-A-T Guidelines?

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By Boris Dzhingarov

You are undoubtedly here because you want to know what Google actually ‘thinks’ about AI generated content. You want to know if AI meets with Google’s E-A-T guidelines which, to any content creator, are the rules we live by – some of them, anyway. There are, in fact, so many guidelines Google has established over the years that if you tried to keep them all in mind at the same time it is likely your brain would explode.

There really are just that many. However, in recent months there has been a huge focus within marketers and content creators on how to effectively use AI so that it slips by the search engines relatively unnoticed. Why do you think that is? Actually, it answers our original question with a simple one-word response. The answer would be a resounding “No!” Google does not like AI content, and honestly, neither should you. Let’s look at all of that a bit closer.

A Basic Understanding of E-A-T

If there is one thing that can be said of Google it would be that everything Google does is focused on the User Experience, UX, and this is the foundation of E-A-T. Those three letters are what SEO content is all about. It stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness and while all three terms are the core of highly ranked websites, let’s take a closer look at trustworthiness. How trustworthy is a website that posts content gathered from around the web by a machine that, then, rewords it so that it sounds original?

People don’t go online to communicate with machines! They want real relationships with real brands and that is where Google got it right! Within the past generation it has become increasingly apparent that the largest group of consumers with buying power want to ‘trust’ the brands they deal with and that they look to them for their expertise in any given field. With the trust factor being huge in any relationship, AI content kills it for them. They don’t want to put their trust in a machine that has no clue what it is to be human with human needs that must be met. Google gets it which is why their algorithms all focus on the human condition and that is something AI will probably never achieve.

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Stepping Back for Just a Moment

At this point, it should be said that AI and Machine Learning are amazing technologies and Google isn’t denying that. Even Google uses both technologies when crawling the web to rank sites and content, for data analytics. That’s as it should be and with that said, it’s not about the amazing technology within both Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, but rather how it is being used.

Instead of using AI to gather and analyze statistics, some marketers are using it to take the place of human content creators. Many believe that it is a cost-effective way to mass produce content because once the machine is programmed to hunt down and reformat content, it can run on autopilot. Yes, it is cheaper in the long run, but is it as effective? That is probably yet to be seen. Nonetheless, what Google doesn’t like is the fact that AI cannot possibly replicate human behavior and emotions.

A Twofold Ranking

When looking at how Google ranks content, there is actually a twofold ranking going on. Not only is the content itself ranked along with the creator of that content but the website is being ranked as well. This is how websites gain status as being ‘authoritative’ and how that very same authority can help boost other websites that link to them as a site of authority.

Consequently, the second letter in Google’s E-A-T guidelines is extremely important both for the site itself and anyone linking to that site. So, the question here should be how does a site gain authority which is why AI will probably never be seen as an authority on anything. At least, it doesn’t appear to be the case at any time in the near future.

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The Interconnectivity of E-A-T

If you stop to think about it, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness are actually all dependent on each other. How does a site gain authority? It’s based on the expertise of the creators and the trust they elicit through their expertise. And trust is also earned through that same expertise. Any way you look at it, two of those concepts are the foundation for the third.

This is also why, at this time, Google doesn’t feel that content created by Artificial Intelligence can meet with those guidelines. Is it possible to think of a technology as being an authority or would it be the programmer who is the authority? Can a machine gain your trust or be an expert on anything? Consider it this way, even with advances in machine learning, a machine is technically incapable of gaining expertise or earning trust. This is part of the reason why Google doesn’t like content created by AI, but it probably goes beyond even that.

Back to Square One

So then, we have come full circle back to our original statement that, as a content creator, you shouldn’t like AI generated content any more than Google does. Perhaps it’s a matter of ethics. Are you honestly comfortable signing your name to a piece of content you neither wrote nor programmed the software to create? Can you honestly take credit for the original article or articles someone else took the time to research and write but were rewritten by machines?

Yes, we research and borrow from concepts written by others, but we build on that. To date, AI is only capable of rewriting a human’s thoughts – and herein lies the final reason why Google will probably never like AI content. Unless machine learning evolves to such a point that it takes on the spirit of humanity, it will probably never have an original thought. In the creation of content, originality is an essential element, and that is something AI still doesn’t have and maybe never will.

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