iBrattleboro To Become Ai-Brattleboro

The creators of iBrattleboro have announced a new direction for the citizen journalism site. “With 20 years of citizen-generated archived local digital media , we realized that iBrattleboro no longer requires citizens to write about where they live.”  The new site will be 100% driven by artificial intelligence ChatGPT code and will generate stories and comments on behalf of former users of the site.

“We just feed the old site content in as prompts, and it generates fresh new content that seems similar to local news and information,” said the owners.  “It’s almost like people are having conversations locally with one another again.”

Ai-Selectboard Meeting Notes can now be generated at any time given an agenda, a weather report, and proposed meeting length. Here is an early example:

“The Brattleboro Selectboard met for eight hours on Tuesday evening , selectively discussing their consent for roads and park utilities budgets. After much discussion and objections by the public, all matters were approved unanimously. and the meeting zoom bombed at 2 am.”

Obviously, some work remains to fine-tune the algorithms.

“We have also fed all previous comments made by users into an AI Chatbot and can now generate authentic-enough comments from all current and former users,” said the site’s new technology director. “With these innovations, citizen journalists no longer have to observe anything where they live, or write about anything that interests them. Ai-Brattleboro takes care of the writing of stories and responding with interesting and sometimes-true comments for them!” 

The team has geolocated comments with map locations to generate real time authentic-sounding local interactions around town.

Errors continue to be corrected. Some report their Ai-Brattleboro user comments tend to veer into discussions of skate park locations, such as this one generated by Ai contributor Ai-Spinozar:

“We’ve waited too long for the FY24 General Fund Budget as a taxpayer, but it should not be located at Crowell Park.”

“Comments are currently weighted toward the last comment you might have made,” said a tech executive. Readers are also cautioned to not attend events that list The Austine School, McNeills, The River Garden, or Alici’s as locations until other bugs are worked out. “It’s not entirely reliable,” said a spokesperson or perhaps a robot.

Users are also no longer encouraged to be creative with photos. The AI bots will generate very realistic images that will supplement the stories they tell and the comments they make.

“It just seems like everyone is tired and distracted, so we’re trying to make it easier,” said the site directors.

Ai-Brattleboro will be implemented sometime in the near future.


[CG NOTE: Below is some REAL AI-generated text about Brattleboro and the Selectboard. (I asked a bot some basic questions….) How many errors you can spot. How much does it seem to get right?]

Brattleboro is known for its arts and culture scene, outdoor recreation opportunities, local food and brews, and progressive and engaged community. The town is also home to a variety of events and festivals throughout the year, including the world-famous Strolling of the Heifers parade.

The Brattleboro Selectboard is the town of Brattleboro’s legislative body. Its five members are elected at-large for three-year terms. The board meets weekly and its responsibilities include approving the town budget, approving contracts, and appointing town officers. The board also works on issues related to economic development, public safety, land use, and municipal operations.

In addition to its legislative duties, the Selectboard serves as the town’s executive body. It implements the policies it adopts and is responsible for managing the town’s day-to-day operations. The board also oversees negotiations with individuals or groups representing the town.

At a Brattleboro Selectboard meeting, the board discusses and votes on various issues related to the town’s operation and governance. These include matters such as budgeting, town policies, public works projects, and community events. Members of the public are often invited to speak and share their opinions on these matters, and board members may engage in debate and discussion before conducting a vote. The meetings are open to the public and are typically held regularly, with agendas posted online in advance.

Based on the previous discussions and reports, in 2020, the Brattleboro Selectboard approved a contract with Rescue Inc. to provide emergency medical services, and they have been working together since then. The board has expressed support for Rescue Inc. and their efforts to provide efficient and high-quality medical care to the community.

The debate over the location of the proposed skatepark in Brattleboro has been ongoing. The proposed location is a riverside lot owned by the town. Proponents of the site argue that it is centrally located, has ample parking, and is easily accessible by bus. Opponents argue that the parking lot is too close to downtown businesses, will disrupt the area’s peace and quiet, and will increase an already concerning traffic problem. Some have suggested alternate locations, such as the nearby fairgrounds. The debate continues and no decision has yet been reached.

Generally, here are some of the most significant issues that Brattleboro faces:

  1. Affordable Housing: Brattleboro faces a constant issue of affordable housing as the real estate market has hiked up rent prices. This has led to the displacement of low-income families and a surge in homeless populations.
  2. Education: Education remains a concern for many families in Brattleboro, particularly in regards to the expense and quality of education. While the public school system is good, many families consider private schooling, and tuition fees create a significant burden.
  3. Unemployment: The town’s local economy poses employment challenges, particularly regarding seasonal job availability, which often requires individuals to take up multiple jobs to make ends meet.
  4. Environmental challenges: The town faces challenges regarding environmental sustainability, particularly in managing waste, reducing energy consumption, and preserving natural resources.
  5. Drug and alcohol abuse: Brattleboro has experienced a surging drug addiction and alcohol abuse problem that places a significant burden on public resources and strains the town’s healthcare system.

According to an article from the Brattleboro Reformer, Ian Goodnow was a candidate for the Brattleboro Selectboard in 2019. During his campaign, he expressed his interest in addressing infrastructure problems, ensuring good governance and promoting sustainable economic development. Other than that, I cannot find any specific information on what he has done for Brattleboro.

iBrattleboro.com is a community website dedicated to providing news, events, and opinions related to Brattleboro, Vermont. It was founded in 2003 and is run by a team of volunteers who are committed to keeping the community informed and engaged. Users can contribute articles, photos, and comments on various topics ranging from local politics, sports, entertainment, and business. There are also forums for discussions and classifieds for buying and selling items. The website is a hub for the Brattleboro community and serves as a resource for residents and visitors alike.

Comments | 2

  • Include me Out!

    Heh, I almost fell for it. But considering the state of things today, it’s no 4/1 joke, and I wouldn’t blame you. Just know, though, that iBratt is still appreciated by many, as is your work on it. True, we’re not as participatory as we should be, but remember: Silence gives consent.

  • hahah!

    After 2+ decades of PTSD in this country, we are tired and distracted. I just don’t have it to write coherent pieces anymore, but I’ll comment when a couple brain cells collide.
    Heureux Poissons d’Avril!

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