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By Jon James|

Kind of strange that a radio personality is even bringing this up…but I (and many others) see this as a real possibility in the not-so-distant future: artificially generated radio voices!

I’m not talking about just commercials. AI voices on commercials are already a thing. In fact, you and I may not even realize that we’re listening to an AI voice. That, to me and others in the voice industry, is scary!

I realize, not a lot of people may even be aware of this trend that will, undoubtedly, be more prevalent in 2024 than it is now and, thankfully, it’s not affecting us here in Maine….yet. But if and when it becomes more mainstream, it could cost jobs. A LOT of jobs.

Take a look at this video station of a “dee jay” in Portland, Oregon. This is what I’m talking about:

I get it. You’re probably saying, “Wow! That’s cool!”

It is that…but it’s a signal to we in the radio/voice industry that we need to find a way to work within these new parameters which are changing with lightening speed!

Here’s what we know:

AI voices ARE NOT people…they are, basically, computer programs.
AI voices CANNOT do appearances and live broadcasts because they are computer programs.
AI voices CANNOT respond, emotionally and personally, to specific needs and questions. Even the well executed telemarketer AI voices, which “talk with you,” can easily be tricked…for now.

So why am I doing a story like this? To make you aware that, in todays world of AI voices, not everything is as it seems. And those of us in the voice industry aren’t the only ones who should be worried.

Here is a frightening report from CBS News about what is happening to unsuspecting victims. This goes WAY beyond AI radio and commercial voices and should be a wakeup call to anyone with a phone:

Wow, right?

This is Orwellian stuff and, while I truly believe there are some good uses for AI generated voices, there is also a downside. The previous video is an example of it.

In summation, I just want to make you aware of something you may not be. The voices you hear may not be real (I’ve been told that about the voices in my head, lol) and you might not be able to tell. Not a big deal for you in most cases, probably. But be aware of what’s possible.

I’m pleased to say that Mix Maine Media’s voices are all the real McCoy (especially Randy McCoy lol) and there are no plans to ditch real people for computer generated voices. Right, boss?

There I go getting all paranoid again.

As someone in the industry, I’m inundated with Facebook ads for AI voices so I see it. I hope this helps you see it, too. Please share to alert family and friends who may not know, after all, knowledge IS power!

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