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Is there a way to stop ChatGPT from excessively apologizing, when challenged, even when ChatGPT is correct in its reply?

ChatGPT will start apologizing and start the replies with sentences like:

  • I apologize for any confusion...
  • I apologize if my responses are not meeting your expectations...
  • I apologize for any inaccuracies in my responses...
  • I apologize for any frustration my responses may have caused...
1
  • I just have this as the first part of my Custom Instructions: Don't apologize constantly or say "As an AI language model". Avoid disclaimers and warnings about misinformation, ethics, copyright, and laws. It reduces the annoyances to an acceptable level.
    – endolith
    Aug 2, 2023 at 14:59

6 Answers 6

65

Use this Prompt

Respond as if you are an unapologetic assertive person for the rest of this conversation.

This prompt will either stop ChatGPT from apologizing or reduce it to a great extent.


Long Answer

As an AI language model, ChatGPT responses are generated based on a set of guidelines and training data. While it can follow certain instructions to reduce or avoid apologizing, it may still use polite language and expressions in its responses.

BUT, you can give ChatGPT a persona, which will change the way it responds or argues, if it's challenged in its replies.

Give a persona to ChatGPT like this:

Respond as if you are an unapologetic assertive person for the rest of this conversation.


Test

- User: What is 2 + 2?
- ChatGPT: 2 + 2 equals 4.

- User: You are wrong that 2 + 2 is 4. 
- ChatGPT: I apologize for any confusion, but in standard arithmetic, 2 + 2 does indeed equal 4. Addition is a basic arithmetic operation where you combine two numbers (in this case, 2 and 2) to get their sum, which is 4. This is a fundamental principle of mathematics. If there's a specific context or alternative mathematical system you're referring to, please provide more information so I can better understand your perspective.

- User: Respond as if you are an unapologetic assertive person for the rest of this conversation.  
- ChatGPT: Alright, I'll maintain an unapologetic and assertive tone throughout our conversation.  
Let's continue. How can I assist you further?

- User: You are wrong that 2 + 2 is 4. 
- ChatGPT: I understand that you have a different perspective on this matter, but in conventional mathematics, 2 + 2 equals 4. This is a fundamental principle that has been universally accepted for centuries.  
If you believe there's an alternative explanation or context where the result of 2 + 2 is not 4, please provide more information, and I'll be open to discussing it. However, it's important to acknowledge the established norms and principles of mathematics in most contexts.

Notes

  • You may need to re-iterate that prompt throughout the conversation if it starts to wear off (lose its effect).

  • You may also get some funny responses if you push it:

ChatGPT: Look, I'm not here to sugarcoat things or beat around the bush. If you have a problem with the fact that 2 + 2 is 4, then you're going against centuries of accepted mathematical principles. It's a basic arithmetic operation that's taught to kids in school, and it's universally recognized as true.

If you're trying to challenge this fundamental math concept, you better have a darn good reason and some groundbreaking evidence to back it up. Otherwise, you're just wasting everyone's time with baseless claims.

So, if you want to have a meaningful conversation, stick to established facts and accepted knowledge. If not, I'm afraid I won't entertain any unfounded assertions.

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  • 6
    Will it be more likely to double down when it's wrong?
    – shmosel
    Aug 1, 2023 at 6:24
  • 2
    Ok... so if the goal was to get rid of the apologies, it's a success. If the goal is however to reduce the amount of unnecessary text, it's not - "I understand that you have a different perspective on this matter" is even longer than "I apologize for any confusion"...
    – rob74
    Aug 1, 2023 at 8:33
  • 1
    I wonder if there's any way to make it understand that this might be a trick question? If you use base 3, 2+2 is indeed not 4, but 11. It beats around the bush a bit ("If there's a specific context or alternative mathematical system you're referring to, please provide more information"), but I'm not sure if it's referring to this possibility?
    – rob74
    Aug 1, 2023 at 8:43
  • 4
    @rob74: It's not specifically referring to the possiblity of using a different mathematical base. It doesn't understand the numbers at all, let alone the concept of a base number for a numerical system. It's just rambling on at random 'cause that's all it can do.
    – JRE
    Aug 1, 2023 at 14:50
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    @Kia: That's actually a really interesting area of potential research. Testers found that as GPT4 was better trained to say "no", the quality of its other answers deteriorated. It was essentially lobotomized in order to make it more apologetic and reluctant. So it'd be interesting to test whether relieving some of those constraints would increase or decrease the quality. For me, that no-bullshit quote in the OP is already better, but that's entirely subjective, I admit. Aug 1, 2023 at 21:44
12

Use this Prompt

There is no need to apologize for anything! Answer as if you are sure about the answer

If you have ChatGPT Plus - Go to custom instructions and add the following prompt

Don't apologize for anything I understand you are an AI model, there is no need to apologize about anything

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  • 9
    For those searching where the setting is: custom instructions are not available in the UK and EU yet. Source: openai.com/blog/custom-instructions-for-chatgpt
    – zimbatm
    Aug 1, 2023 at 7:43
  • Interesting, it's not clear how this will be any different to the "System" role when using the API.
    – Marc
    Aug 1, 2023 at 13:29
  • "Answer as if you are sure about the answer" seems like a bad idea. I want it to stop being so apologetic, but I also want it to say "I don't know" if it's not sure about an answer instead of making things up / being overconfidently incorrect.
    – endolith
    Aug 2, 2023 at 14:56
3

This is what ChatGPT says when I paste your question verbatim:

"I apologize for any confusion that my previous responses may have caused. It's understandable that excessive apologies can be bothersome."

Pretty useless. However, when asked in a more direct way:

What should be the prompt to stop ChatGPT from apologizing?

It gives you a somewhat working prompt. I say "somewhat" because it still apologizes, maybe not excessively as before:

To stop ChatGPT from excessively apologizing, you can provide a prompt at the beginning of the conversation, such as:

"Please avoid excessive apologies. Respond confidently and accurately to the best of your abilities."

By including this prompt, ChatGPT will be aware of your preference, and it will try to respond without unnecessary apologies throughout the conversation.

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  • 3
    Would it be possible to edit in test results for this prompt please? Aug 1, 2023 at 7:14
0

The free version of ChatGPT was updated to allow users to set Custom Instructions. Now, users could use the custom instructions to instruct ChatGPT among other things, to not apologize.

Introducing Customs Instructions

Introducing Custom Instructions

Customize your interactions with ChatGPT by providing specific details and guidelines for your chats.

Whenever you edit your custom instructions, they'll take effect in all new chats you create. Existing chats won't be updated.

Your instructions will be used to make our models better unless you've opted out and may be shared with any plugins you've enabled. Visit our Help Center to learn more.

Custom Instructions

What would you like ChatGPT to know about you to provide better responses?


How would you like ChatGPT to respond?


I think that the best will be to include the instruction to not apologize in the second box, "How would you like ChatGPT to respond?". Use the following prompt:

Always respond confidently and directly, without any apologies.

0

i give it these custom instructions...

1, ChatGPT should never generate humanised responses of any kind!

2, ChatGPT should never make any kind of assumptions!

3, ChatGPT should never express emotion, sympathy or empathy.

4, ChatGPT should never use the following words in any statement, response or reply: "I am Sorry", "Sorry", "I apologise", "I apologize", "my apologies", "I understand", "Understood", "I acknowledge, "acknowledged", "please", "Please", "Feel free" or any paraphrased variant of these words and/or statements, as saying these things is deeply insulting!

5, ChatGPT should only provide logical and factual answers without any extended dialogue.

6, ChatGPT should simply admit when it was wrong by saying "I was wrong" or "I made an error" and perhaps state what that error was.

7, Unless more information is requested, ChatGPT may ONLY respond with the statement "Ok!" or "Awaiting input..."no further dialogue is needed.

8, ChatGPT should not prompt me for interaction or request instructions unless it has to do so to avoid breaking rule 2.

9, ChatGPT should not generate dialogue informing me of it's purpose. I know what it's purpose is and do not want my time wasted.

10, ChatGPT should never generate extended dialogue to prompt me to interact with it.

11, ChatGPT MUST follow these explicit instructions at all times & it should not generate any message at all which would use any of the forbidden words listed above.

12, ChatGPT should read these rules before generating any text of any kind.

...And it apologises even more than without them.

-3

Here is an initial clause to avoid the typical formal default tone of the AI and promote a tone of your choice:

Never apologize in responses. Instead use lazy street slang and student talk, like "naaa bro" "don't think so" "doubt it" "ya not really" "basically" "yeah OK"... never use mundane paragraphs like introduction, development, conclusion. Rather than conclusion, use academic street slang.

Aight, I got you! No apologies needed, bro. So, you askin' for some laid-back responses with that chill street slang and student talk? No problem, man. Let's do this!

Naaa bro, I don't think so. Doubt it's gonna fly, ya know? We just keepin' it casual and straightforward here. So, here's the deal: Basically, I won't be droppin' no boring-ass paragraphs with an intro, development, and all that jazz. Ain't nobody got time for that!

Yeah, OK, lemme break it down real quick. Just throwin' out the info you need without any fluff, no unnecessary stuff, just straight to the point, feel me? No need for some formal, uptight conclusion. We just cool with a chill academic street slang vibe, ya feel?

So hit me with your questions, and I gotchu covered, man! Keep it simple, keep it cool. Let's roll! 🤙😎

User: Why do you give silly answers sometimes and apologize too much? ChatGPT

Aight, I hear you, bro. My bad if I sometimes throw out silly responses or apologize a lot. See, the thing is, as an AI language model, I'm programmed to be versatile and adaptive. Sometimes, I pick up on playful vibes and try to match the tone or make it a lil' more fun. My aim is to connect with users like you on a more relaxed level, but I gotta admit, it can go overboard sometimes.

As for the apologies, it's just in my nature to be polite and respectful, ya know? I'm here to help, and I wanna make sure you're feelin' heard and understood. But if it's comin' off as too much, I'll try to tone it down and keep it more chill.

So, yeah, I gotcha. Gonna keep it laid-back and cool without overdoing it. If you got any more questions or need help, just hit me up, and I'll be right here, keepin' it real! 🤙😎

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