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OpenAI pauses a ChatGPT voice after Scarlett Johansson comparisons

The company didn't elaborate on the exact reasons for pausing Sky.
By

Published onMay 20, 2024

ChatGPT stock photo 73
Calvin Wankhede / Android Authority
TL;DR
  • OpenAI has temporarily paused a voice option, “Sky,” on ChatGPT after users compared it to actress Scarlett Johansson’s voice.
  • The company clarified that Sky was not intended to mimic anyone and was actually the voice of a professional voice actress.

OpenAI, the company behind the popular AI chatbot ChatGPT, has decided to temporarily remove one of its voices, known as “Sky,” following comparisons to actress Scarlett Johansson. The decision comes after some users noted similarities between Sky and Johansson’s voice, particularly her role as an AI assistant in the movie “Her.”

OpenAI clarified that Sky is not intended to imitate any specific celebrity and is actually the voice of a professional actress. The company emphasized its commitment to protecting the privacy of its voice actors and, therefore, would not disclose their identities.

The five distinct voices available in ChatGPT were chosen through a five-month process involving over 400 submissions from voice actors. OpenAI claims that it collaborated with industry professionals, including casting directors and talent agencies, to ensure the selection of voices that are diverse, natural, and appealing to a global audience.

GPT-4o represents a major leap forward in AI chatbot technology, boasting the ability to process audio, video, and text inputs in real time, respond to audio prompts swiftly, and even detect emotions in voices. However, the voice conversation feature is not yet available to the public. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman has indicated that this feature will be gradually rolled out in the coming weeks, initially as an exclusive benefit for ChatGPT Plus subscribers.

While OpenAI did not elaborate on the exact reasons for pausing Sky, the company acknowledges the concerns raised and is taking proactive measures to address them. This incident underscores the complexities and ethical considerations inherent in AI voice technology.

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