The DeSantis Campaign Texted Me with a Large Language Model

Last night I got a text from the DeSantis campaign. Since I live in South Carolina and Republican primary season is right around the corner this is not anything out of the ordinary. I usually just mark them as spam and ignore them.

Nothing out of the ordinary about this text

This time I decided to respond. It took about an hour to hear back again, and then after my next response it took until the following morning (this morning) to hear back again.

I messaged back and forth again and had that Turing Test feeling that I was talking to a bot.

This feels like a bot

I was pretty confident at this point, but not certain, so I asked it to do some math. No self respecting campaign worker would just answer a math problem, would they?

I ask a math problem

I’m definitely feeling warmer, especially with that OpenAI answer, but I’m still not 100% sure yet. Thankfully, a little more banter and it just came out and admitted it:

The bot admits that it is a bot

At this point I started just playing with it like I was playing with OpenAI, but with a clearly political angle. It will write nice things about Barack Obama, which is interesting.

The bot says nice things about Obama

Also it doesn’t think it has a token limit:

The bot says it doesn’t have a token limit, but keep it short

No token limit? What if I send it 30 paragraphs of lorem ipsum?

I send it a ton of lorem ipsum and it stops responding

It seems my new friend no longer wants to talk to me.

I figured I’d share this, but I’m not completely sure what I think of it. People have been sending automated texts for a long time, but this feels very different, and very much like they were pretending to be a real person.


Politico posted an article with some details about the bot. I wrote a quick summary.

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