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There's been anger from artists after the BBC replaced actress Sara Poyzer with a voice generated by artificial intelligence

BBC Broadcasting House in Portland Place, London. The BBC chairman Richard Sharp has announced he is quitting to “prioritise the interests” of the broadcaster after a report by Adam Heppinstall found he breached the governance code for public appointments. Mr Sharp conceded after Adam Heppinstall KC’s report into his appointment found he “failed to disclose potential perceived conflicts of interest”. Picture date: Friday April 28, 2023. 71929813 (Press Association via AP Images)

Actress Sara Poyzer was reportedly dropped by the BBC after the broadcaster opted to use artificial intelligence-generated voice in a project she had worked on. Poyzer, best known for her work in the on stage ABBA-themed musical Mamma Mia, shared

BBC

BBC Headquarters (Press Association via AP Images)

Actress Sara Poyzer was reportedly dropped by the BBC after the broadcaster opted to use artificial intelligence-generated voice in a project she had worked on.

Poyzer, best known for her work in the on stage ABBA-themed musical Mamma Mia, shared the revelation via an email screenshot on X on Wednesday, branding the news “sobering”:

The post, which now has over 2 million views, ignited a fierce debate about the encroaching role of AI in displacing human talent. As many users and artists responded to share their commiserations for Poyzer on the loss of the job and to express their frustration at the move. Game of Thrones actor Miltos Yerolemou called for “creatives to draw a line in the sand.”

In her initial post, Poyzer tagged BBC Arts and also actors’ union Equity, which is actively pushing for legal changes to protect performers’ livelihoods.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Voice Squad, the agency Poyzer worked through, said: “We were very disappointed to receive the production company’s response, particularly as it’s a BBC project. The BBC have always stood for quality in their factual and drama broadcasting. As a voiceover agency we feel that AI is a danger to the whole industry – removing work from artists who have trained for three years at drama-school and spent many years honing their craft. Voice artists are particularly skilled actors who deserve not to have their work devalued.”

The BBC issued a statement Thursday, detailing their reasoning:

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