Tuesday, March 28, 2023
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Microsoft limits Bing AI chatbot to just 5 messages per topic in effort to reduce rampancy

What you need to know

  • Microsoft has announced an update to the Bing AI chat feature introduced last week.
  • The company found that long conversations can confuse Bing, causing it to go off topic.
  • As a result, Microsoft is limiting chats with Bing AI to just 5 chat turns per topic, 50 chat turns a day.

Microsoft has announced a radical change to its Bing AI chatbot that was first revealed to the world last week. Starting today, users with access to the Bing preview will no longer be able to chat with Bing AI freely, with conversations now being limited to just 5 chat turns per topic, and 50 chat turns per day.

The company says it’s implementing these limits because testing has found that the chatbot can get easily confused during long conversations as it struggles to keep up with all the context and data it has presented, often resulting in the AI bot going off topic, and even becoming rude or outright weird in some instances. Almost like rampancy!

Now, when the user attempts to continue a conversation past the 5th chat turn, Bing AI will prompt the user to reset the conversation and start again. After the 50th chat turn in a day, the chat bot will stop functioning altogether, and you’ll be asked to come back tomorrow.

Bing will now end conversations after 5 messages. (Image credit: Windows Central)

Here’s what Microsoft said in a blog post about the change:

“Our data has shown that the vast majority of people find the answers they’re looking for within 5 turns and that only ~1% of chat conversations have 50+ messages.  After a chat session hits 5 turns, people will be prompted to start a new topic. At the end of each chat session, context needs to be cleared so the model won’t get confused. Just click on the broom icon to the left of the search box for a fresh start. As we continue to get feedback, we will explore expanding the caps on chat sessions.”

It’s a big change, and one that highlights the very early nature of AI chatbots powered by large natural language models. With that said, I can’t imagine there are people out there using Bing AI more than a few times per week, let alone per day, so this change likely won’t be a big deal for most.

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