For those of you who are up early enough to hear it, CBC Daybreak this morning is introducing the newest member of the CBC Radio Montreal news team, the Autobot Seven Alpha, its automated news reader.
According to CBC, the automated news reader is designed to replace the mindless task of reading text over the air, allowing the network to free many employees from having to go into a studio every half hour and repeat the same story introductions over and over again.
Needless to say the union isn’t happy about it, but in the face of 800 job cuts they’re trying to pick their battles. Creating efficiencies in these non-journalistic tasks keeps the network from having to cut actual journalists.
A sample of what the Autobot Seven Alpha sounds like is available here:
The Autobot Seven Alpha will be tested over the coming weeks along with carbon-based humanoid news readers. If all goes well, they’re expected to take over on June 1.
A rumour of a similar system for TV news announcers turned out to be false, much to the relief of Michel Godbout. Reports of human enslavement were, it seems, exaggerated as well.