Adobe Voco ‘Photoshop-for-voice’ causes concern – BBC News

A new tool that makes it possible for computers to mimic a specific person’s voice causes alarm.

Source: Adobe Voco ‘Photoshop-for-voice’ causes concern – BBC News

I didn’t see this article when it first came out, but WOW! A Photoshop-like application that can change audio? At first, it sounds like a really cool app, but as this article explains, it could actually be rather dangerous in the wrong hands.

As content developers, understanding that there are tools like this possibly on the market helps us to understand some of the possibilities and limitations of where we, as technical communicators, can take content to the next level. Who says we can’t take someone’s voice and alter it to read something else, just like reading text of any other source content? Or have the ability to replace an image or other multimedia element that we have now? As the article points out in more details, copyright infringements are a first consideration, but what about security based on voice commands? What about altering audio that gives a different message? Especially after this recent U.S. election, the issue of “fake news” influencing the election would be grossly affected if such technology was already out–it’d be worse than it already is!

Read this article, and give me some feedback about what you think about this upcoming technology. Is it good, bad, or do we need to wait and see how it will be distributed first? Include your comments below.

–TechCommGeekMom

About TechCommGeekMom

Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who has recently started her own technical communications consultancy, Dair Communications. She has worked at the International Refugee Committee, MetLife, Novo Nordisk, and BASF North America, with a background in content strategy, web content management, social media, project management, e-learning, and client services. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog, TechCommGeekMom.com, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in 2012. She has presented webinars and seminars for Adobe, the Society for Technical Communication (STC), the IEEE ProComm, and at Drexel University’s eLearning Conference. She has written articles for the STC Intercom, STC Notebook, the Content Rules blog, and The Content Wrangler as well. You can learn more about Danielle on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/daniellemvillegas, on Twitter @techcommgeekmom, or through her blog.
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2 Responses to Adobe Voco ‘Photoshop-for-voice’ causes concern – BBC News

  1. Larry Kunz says:

    Hmm…. I’ve been reading so much about the “fake news” issue that my mind immediately assumes the worst: that this kind of software would be used for all kinds of nefarious purposes. Even after I take a breath and calm down, it’s hard to see much of a legitimate market. Adobe envisions people using it to edit podcasts and other audio content. But we can already edit podcasts, cutting out background noise, pauses, and such. Why do we need software that changes the words that someone said?

    Gee, imagine if Richard Nixon had had access to this. What a ghastly thought.

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