Survey on the

Public Perceptions of Generative AI in Germany


SYZYGY GROUP, March 23, 2023

Dr. Paul Marsden, Digital Strategist SYZYGY GROUP & ChatGPT


Imagine a world where human creativity is enhanced and augmented by machine creativity. That’s the promise of generative artificial intelligence (GenAI), a potentially revolutionary new technology that allows machines to behave creatively, exhibiting skills associated with human creativity.

GenAI is already making waves in the creative fields of art, design, and photography, where machine-generated entries are winning awards in competitions. Now, the same technology looks set to ignite a revolution in business creativity. From design and strategy to marketing, GenAI promises to help businesses generate new and exciting creative solutions that are useful, beautiful, and thought-provoking.

The technology is new, but we’re already seeing AI-generated ads, content, and designs prove popular with professionals and the public alike. To generate this creative output, businesses are turning to an expanding suite of GenAI tools. One of these is the multilingual creative chatbot from OpenAI, ChatGPT.

Beyond generating answers, stories, poems, and homework, ChatGPT is being used in business to generate business plans, summarize data, and develop marketing content and assets. Since its release on November 30, 2022, ChatGPT has been adopted faster than any other human technology to date, logging over 100 million users within two months.

Beyond creative text, other GenAI tools promise to expand business creativity through the mediums of images, audio, video, and code. The potential of GenAI is to push the boundaries of human imagination to unlock new levels of creative expression. If humans can imagine it, GenAI can help businesses create it.

With GenAI making headlines in early 2023, SYZYGY GROUP conducted what we believe to be the first major survey of public perceptions of generative AI in Germany.

What do people really think of machines behaving creatively and simulating human creativity? How would they feel if products, sites, or apps were created by machines instead of humans?

Are Germans ready for machine-generated ads, designs, and services?

What we found surprised us.

Public Perceptions of Generative AI in Germany

Overall, we found that Germans have a surprisingly high level of awareness and interest in GenAI, the technology that enables machines to behave creatively. Germans are generally excited and optimistic about its potential to unlock both human and business creativity.

Specifically, we found that nearly two-thirds of Germans are aware of technology can behave creatively. A similar proportion has heard of ChatGPT, the creative chatbot that can generate answers, articles, essays, and stories.

The awareness of GenAI and machine creativity translates to interest for many Germans, with half of all Germans interested in trying this technology themselves to improve or assist their own creativity. This is consistent with international research – at the end of 2022, 4 of the top 6 free apps in the US app store were generative AI apps.

Beyond AI art, music, and text generation, one in four Germans are interested in trying more controversial GenAI apps already available in the US. These include the ‘Deep Nostalgia’ program, which uses AI to turn static photos of lost loved ones into video. A similar number of Germans would be interested in trying, which allows users to create a digital clone of themselves that can continue to interact with loved ones after their own death.

Overall, Germans are optimistic about the potential of GenAI to boost human creativity, with two-thirds believing that AI will ultimately help humans become more creative. Interestingly, three-quarters of Germans think AI will eventually surpass humans in terms of creative ability, with one in ten believing this has already happened.

In a series of blind tests to find out how Germans respond to creative output generated by machines, we found no preference for human-created art and design over machine generated equivalents. This tallies well with the opinion of 40% of Germans that art created by AI could be as good as art created by the best human artists.

Perhaps most interesting are our findings about what Germans think of GenAI being used commercially to automate business creativity. In short, the majority of Germans would not object to businesses using GenAI.

Dr. Paul Marsden

Brands in Germany have the “green light” to embrace and leverage GenAI to unlock business creativity.

Dr. Paul Marsden
Digital Strategist SYZYGY GROUP

Many think this is a good thing, with two-thirds believing this technology will help businesses become more creative. For many Germans, the prospect of replacing human creativity with machine creativity poses no problem. For example, four in ten Germans believe businesses should automate creative tasks in marketing if this reduces the carbon footprint of the brand. Only a third of Germans think this is a bad idea.

Public optimism about GenAI in Germany appears to be tempered only by concerns that GenAI could be used by businesses to mislead or manipulate people. Nine in ten Germans believe that machine creativity is now so good that it is difficult to tell whether creative content, such as ads, articles, or images have been created by technology or humans.

Overall, nine in ten Germans believe that people should have the right to know if the content they are consuming has been generated or altered by AI. Three-quarters of Germans would support a ‘Blade Runner’-style law in Germany that would make it illegal for AI to conceal its identity and impersonate a real human.

Unlocking a Creative Future

The results of our GenAI survey suggest that consumer and business brands in Germany have the “green light” to embrace and leverage GenAI to unlock business creativity and provide new AI-generated creative content, designs, and experiences for their customers. While concerns about the potential misuse of GenAI to manipulate people remain, the survey results reveal that GenAI has captured the attention of the German public, and many are enthusiastic about its potential.

As part of our GenAI initiative at SYZYGY GROUP, we are creating a dedicated task force to explore how we can help our clients unlock creativity using GenAI. Many of our clients are already using AI to drive business efficiency by automating tasks that traditionally required human intelligence. However, GenAI is different and new, with a focus on improving business creativity through machine creativity that augments human creativity.

As part of this initiative, we are monitoring this fast-moving space to learn how GenAI is being deployed across our industry to enhance and augment business creativity. We are developing a database of tools and use cases as they emerge to help our clients understand and exploit this technology. We are running client workshops to help familiarize teams with GenAI and its potential. As we move forward, our goal is to help businesses seize the creative potential of GenAI in a manner that is approachable, actionable, and responsible.

The results of our survey clearly show that businesses should be transparent about their use of GenAI technology and have robust measures in place to prevent the misuse of GenAI and protect their consumers from false or harmful content. Part of our role will be to help our clients achieve this.

At SYZYGY GROUP , we believe GenAI heralds a new creative era for digital business. Yes, digital can help businesses save time, effort and money.

But digital can be so much more; it can help businesses create value by being more creative. Through GenAI, businesses can unlock business creativity to explore the furthest reaches of human imagination – and beyond.

While we don’t believe AI will replace human creativity anytime soon, we do expect that humans using creative-AI will progressively replace those who don’t.

It’s an exciting time to be part of this creative digital revolution, and we’re looking forward to helping our clients build a creative and better future where humans and machines work together in perfect harmony.

I’m a chartered psychologist and I help brands understand their consumers.
Dr. Paul Marsden
Dr Paul Marsden Digital Strategist
On this page