Author Topic: Genderless Artificial Voice  (Read 217 times)

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Offline Iztaccihuatl

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Genderless Artificial Voice
« on: March 15, 2019, 12:44:26 am »
I just stumbled over this web site: http://www.genderlessvoice.com

They demo a supposedly genderless voice and pitch it for use in digital assistants instead of the currently gendered voices of Siri, Alexa, etc.

While it doesn't help in training our own voices, I still felt it interesting how much pitch by itself changes the voice (you can move the pitch around while the demo is running by dragging the circle up or down on the screen).

Just wanted to share this and see what you all think.

HM

Offline Lynne

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Re: Genderless Artificial Voice
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2019, 08:42:00 am »
I totally agree with the first sentiment on the page:
Quote
Technology companies often choose to gender technology believing it will make people more comfortable adopting it.

Unfortunately this reinforces a binary perception of gender, and perpetuates stereotypes that many have fought hard to progress.

I'm all for equal rights, I think the gender binary is a flawed concept and I believe in giving options to people, but I think the next paragraph is a bit much:

Quote
As society continues to break down the gender binary, recognising those who neither identify as male nor female, the technology we create should follow.

I agree that we should recognize that not all people feel comfortable in the gender binary but that sentence(at least to me) feels a bit like they want to force this on the whole population because there are some people who don't fit the gender binary which is a not a good argument in my opinion.

I think we should have the option to customize the voices of these services in a similar way that it is done on that website and not force one voice everywhere. But if we would force one voice, preferably it should be a genderless one but not because some people don't fit in the gender binary but because of what was said in the first paragraph.

Offline Iztaccihuatl

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Re: Genderless Artificial Voice
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2019, 01:06:25 am »
Lynne,

I fully agree. There should be a choice which voice someone want for their digital assistant and a gender neutral voice option would be a good idea next to the current gendered options. I do find it somewhat sexist that the default voice for all those Siris, Alexas, Cortanas, Googles, etc is female, a gender-neutral one might be a better choice...

HM

Offline Lynne

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Re: Genderless Artificial Voice
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2019, 05:02:58 am »
Lynne,

I fully agree. There should be a choice which voice someone want for their digital assistant and a gender neutral voice option would be a good idea next to the current gendered options. I do find it somewhat sexist that the default voice for all those Siris, Alexas, Cortanas, Googles, etc is female, a gender-neutral one might be a better choice...

HM

I understand why they chose female voices but as you said as well, it is sexist and that's why it should be changed or at least we should have the option to change it.
I'm not sure if I would personally change it because I like female voices very much for my own reasons.

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