Danish Kapoor
Danish Kapoor

OpenAI pulls Scarlett Johansson-like ChatGPT voice

OpenAI announced that it has paused the ChatGPT voice model, which draws attention with its resemblance to Scarlett Johansson. This voice model, known as Sky, attracted great attention from the media and the public. The company announced that this voice is now discontinued.

In the statement made by OpenAI, it was emphasized that artificial intelligence voices should not deliberately imitate the distinctive voices of celebrities. It has been stated that Sky's voice is not an imitation of Scarlett Johansson, but rather the natural speaking voice of another professional actress. This statement shows that OpenAI does not intend to imitate the voices of celebrities exactly.

Speaking to The Verge last week, OpenAI CTO Mira Murati stated that they did not aim to imitate Johansson's voice. However, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman was aware of the similarities between the Sky voice model and Scarlett Johansson's voice. Altman expressed this situation with the word “her” on the X platform.

Sam Altman previously stated Spike Jonze's “Her”, in which Scarlett Johansson voiced, as his favorite movie. In this movie, Johansson voiced a virtual assistant and won the admiration of the masses for this role. OpenAI did not indicate whether it had received any notice of legal issues arising from similarities between the Sky audio model and Johansson or the movie “Her.”

ChatGPT's voice mode and Sky voice model have been in use since last year. However, this feature has attracted even more attention with improvements made as part of OpenAI's new GPT-4o model. The new model makes the voice assistant more expressive and can read facial expressions through a phone's camera.

OpenAI noted that the five available ChatGPT voice profiles were selected from submissions from more than 400 voice and screen gamers. The company aims to protect the privacy of players by keeping their names secret. This policy emphasizes that players' personal and professional privacy is important.

The new ChatGPT voice assistant features will be available in the coming weeks as a limited “alpha” release for ChatGPT Plus subscribers. OpenAI plans to introduce additional voices to better suit users' diverse interests and preferences. These new voice models aim to enrich the user experience of artificial intelligence technology.

This decision of OpenAI caused artificial intelligence and ethics discussions to come to the agenda again. The issue of whether artificial intelligence technologies can use celebrities' voices or other personal characteristics without permission is being debated among legal and ethical experts. These discussions raise important questions about the future uses and limits of artificial intelligence.

OpenAI's decision to pause a Scarlett Johansson-like voice can be described as an indication of sensitivity about the ethical use of artificial intelligence technologies. The company states that it will continue to comply with its legal and ethical responsibilities while improving the user experience. Such decisions are seen as important steps to better understand and manage the impacts of artificial intelligence technologies on society.

Danish Kapoor