Scarlett Johansson 'shocked' by AI chatbot imitation | BBC News

Actress Scarlett Johansson is seeking legal advice after an AI chatbot’s voice was released, sounding eerily similar to hers, despite the chatbot’s owners denying any intent to imitate her. Johansson’s case highlights concerns about protecting individual rights in the digital age and raises questions about the ethical considerations of using technology to replicate human voices and appearances.

Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson is seeking legal advice after a new version of the AI chatbot GPT was released with a voice that she claims is eerily similar to her own. The owners of the chatbot deny that the voice was intended to imitate the star. Johansson gained worldwide recognition for her face, but it is now her voice that is receiving scrutiny.

In the movie “Her,” Johansson played an AI chatbot, and a voice remarkably similar to hers, named Sky, has been used by OpenAI for their assistant released last week. Johansson disclosed that she had been approached to provide the voice for the new system but declined. She expressed shock, anger, and disbelief upon hearing the released demo that sounded so much like her voice that even her close friends and news outlets couldn’t distinguish between them.

Johansson criticized OpenAI’s CEO, Sam Altman, for posting about the chatbot on social media with the word “Her,” which she interpreted as an insinuation that she was the inspiration for the chatbot’s sound. Despite OpenAI’s denial that it was an imitation, they have paused using Sky’s voice out of respect for Johansson. Altman clarified that the voice of Sky is not Johansson’s and was never intended to resemble hers, emphasizing that the voice actor was cast before any outreach to Johansson.

This incident highlights concerns about protecting individual rights in a world where artificial intelligence and deep fakes pose increasing threats. Johansson’s case reflects a larger issue faced by celebrities in maintaining control over their identities in the digital age. The development of AI and the rise of deep fake technology raise questions about the boundaries of intellectual property and the potential misuse of individuals’ likeness.

As AI continues to evolve, the story underscores the complexities and ethical considerations surrounding the use of technology to replicate human voices and appearances. The intersection of entertainment, technology, and legal rights is becoming increasingly intertwined, with celebrities like Scarlett Johansson at the forefront of navigating these challenges. The incident with the AI chatbot serves as a reminder of the ongoing debate around privacy, identity, and the implications of AI advancements.