Seems OpenAI’s voice assistant sounding like Scarlett Johannsson wasn’t a lot of a coincidence


  • Scarlett Johansson thinks OpenAI could have used her voice with out permission in its new AI assistant, resulting in authorized calls for.
  • OpenAI claims the voice in query, named Sky, belongs to a special actress and was not an imitation of Johansson.
  • CEO Sam Altman’s previous statements and makes an attempt to influence Johansson to license her voice add a controversial twist to the scenario.

We at Android Police do not actually discuss movie star drama, however when the celebs align, and a tech angle presents itself whereas paired with movie star drama, we simply can not help ourselves. Such is the case with the present dispute between American actress Scarlett Johansson and artificiaI intelligence large OpenAI.

The actress, finest recognized for her roles in movies like “Misplaced In Translation,” “Marriage Story,” and taking part in the position of Black Widow in Marvel films, is accusing OpenAI of utilizing her voice in an AI voice assistant software.


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Final week, OpenAI revealed its newest mannequin, GPT-4o, which lets customers speak to ChatGPT’s voice assistant in a true-to-life and genuine method. In response to the corporate’s demo, the brand new assistant has superior capabilities, like facial features recognition, the flexibility to detect feelings in spoken dialogue, singing, and finishing duties as requested. It additionally has a number of voices, together with Breeze, Cove, Ember, Juniper and Sky.

For instance, in a demo, the assistant was requested to sing a lullaby about “majestic potatoes,” and was later requested to do the identical, however whereas whispering. Equally, its visible detection was additionally put to the take a look at, when a consumer requested the software to inform him if he seems to be presentable for an interview. Take a look at the video beneath for reference.

One of many voices the software makes use of, named Sky, sounds eerily acquainted to that of Scarlett Johansson. Consequently, the actress has employed authorized counsel, who’re demanding OpenAI to disclose the way it developed the voice. The Sky voice, which is basically being in comparison with Johansson’s voice within the sci-fi movie “Her,” has now been pulled from the software, introduced OpenAI in a weblog put up on Sunday, Might 19. In response to the AI large, “Sky’s voice just isn’t an imitation of Scarlett Johansson however belongs to a special skilled actress utilizing her personal pure talking voice.”

Is that this a primary instance of OpenAI waffling?

Apparently, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, again in September 2023, claimed that “Her” was his favourite movie. “I like Her. The issues Her acquired proper—like the entire interplay fashions of how folks use AI—that was extremely prophetic,” he stated at Dreamforce 2023, through The San Francisco Normal. So as to add to that, the day GPT-4o was proven off, Altman tweeted “her” on X, suggesting a similarity between the film, the place Johansson voices an working system. This does not explicitly imply that the voice is certainly supposed to duplicate Johansson, however considerably alludes to that.

If that weren’t sufficient, new data through Johansson herself means that Altman had been attempting to influence her to license her voice for the brand new AI assistant. In a press release given to The Verge by Johansson’s consultant, the actress stated that her voicing the AI assistant may “bridge the hole between tech firms and creatives,” and that her voice could be “comforting to folks.” In response to the actress, she declined Altman’s request for private causes. Then, two days previous to the GPT-4o reveal, Johansson reportedly acquired a request from Altman to rethink her resolution, however earlier than motion could possibly be taken, the Sky assistant’s voice was throughout, and it was so just like the actress’ voice that her “closest associates and information retailers couldn’t inform the distinction.”

In the mean time, it seems to be like Johansson is just searching for transparency relating to how the voice was created, alongside “laws to assist be certain that particular person rights are protected.”

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