0082: Let’s Settle On “Synthetic Voices,” Not “AI”

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Hey there, hero!

I get it. “AI” has two short syllables, and “synthetic voices” has five longer ones, so it’s a bit more time-consuming to say.

But it might be useful to try to commit to using the latter, rather than the former, despite its slightly longer length, when we start feeling concerned about our future as human voice talent.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is used in almost every facet of our creative process, from script management to casting to recording to production to proofing…and on to email, social media and just about everything else.

AI is a broad, generic category of technology.

Synthetic voices, on the other hand, is a pretty specific use of machine learning, data mining, digital modeling and yes, AI.

Can we all agree to use accurate terminology for the dangers we observe that doesn’t throw the baby out with the bath water?

Lots of technology (I’m looking at you, Pozotron) is getting a bad rap because they happen to use aspects of AI in their workflow. People have made grossly inaccurate statements about AI-based products and services because…well…they don’t know any better.

We can and should know better.

Once I’ve made my case for this in this episode, answer this for me: do you agree? Or do you simply feel that Skynet will soon be self-aware, so who cares what we call it? Discuss, if you would, in the comments below.

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  1. The synthetic voices have definitely made me a little concerned. It makes me wonder how much IVR work and audiobook work is being lost all the time because the cost of synthetic voices is probably much lower than hiring voice talent. Plus you don’t have the back and forth with the voice talent for pickups. I’m sure some businesses want actual human voices, but I worry about how many businesses will ultimately turn to synthetic voices.