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The world’s favorite specialized chatbot platform may release an official statement amid rumors of a potential shutdown. All is not well in the hotly contested artificial intelligence app arena. But are the rumors true? Is Character AI shutting down, or worse, getting deleted?
Is Character AI shutting down?
Character AI has been going from strength to strength this year, even reaching a valuation of $1 billion USD two years post-launch. With over 100 million monthly site visits, and an average time on site of “more than two hours per day for users who send a message”, Beta Character AI has proved its’ product market fit. This success hasn’t been without its fair share of challenges and controversy, however. Artificial intelligence is a notoriously difficult thing to scale, with servers struggling to keep up with demand and still proving prohibitively expensive for the Character AI team.
Could these rising server costs, outages, or legal challenges relating to NSFW filters be the reason Character is shutting down Thankfully, no. To date, there has been no official announcement of Character AI shutting down.
The rumors, spread predominantly on Twitter and Reddit, have sent users scrambling. We humans love to personify and bond with animate objects – especially when the animate subject can respond in natural human language thanks to NLP (Natural Language Processing). As a result, many are scared to lose the character they’ve been chatting to for weeks or months and may have, questionably, formed a bond with. While Character AI does not offer a way to back up your character itself to the cloud, you can at least copy and paste your ‘personality definition’ to a Google Doc.
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What is going on with Character AI?
The a16z-backed AI chatbot startup allows users to create their own virtual characters, and converse with them ‘in character’. These new characters each have a unique personality as defined by the user who created them, and new users can chat with existing bots made by others. This freedom has invited controversy over NSFW content policy – and mandating a ‘correct’ philosophy of free speech is perhaps more than Character.AI founder and CEO Noam Shazeer initially signed up for.
The closely related rumor of Character AI getting deleted also appears to be false.
Lately, Character AI servers have continued to be subject to internet connection issues and error messages. The inconvenience is somewhat offset by the capabilities and new features being continually released. We do have advice on this topic. First and foremost, try a different browser (Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge are all recommended). If that doesn’t work, then clear your browser caches or try a VPN.
If all of this uncertainty is a bit much, you might be interested in our list of Character AI alternatives.