Scarlett Johansson told OpenAI not to use her voice — and she’s not happy they might have anyway

Scarlett Johansson disputes OpenAI's use of a voice resembling hers in ChatGPT.

: Scarlett Johansson claims OpenAI created a ChatGPT voice, Sky, that mimics hers despite her refusal to collaborate. After hearing the demo, she hired legal counsel to address the uncanny similarity and protect her likeness. OpenAI has since paused the use of Sky’s voice and is in discussions over the issue.

Scarlett Johansson expressed displeasure with OpenAI after noticing the eerie similarity between her voice and that of Sky, an AI-generated voice used in ChatGPT, which she claims was modeled after her without permission. Although OpenAI reached out to Johansson to originally voice ChatGPT, she declined the offer for personal reasons. Subsequently, OpenAI launched ChatGPT’s voice mode with a voice that attendees and Johansson herself found strikingly familiar to her own, leading to her shock and prompting her to seek legal counsel for a resolution.

The revelation of the similarity between Johansson’s voice and the Sky voice led to significant public and media attention, further aggravated by OpenAI CEO Sam Altman’s ambiguous tweet which hinted at the intentional use of Johansson’s likeness. The situation highlighted ongoing concerns about the ethical use of AI in mimicking human traits and the potential for confusion or misrepresentation. In response to Johansson’s legal pressure, OpenAI has temporarily removed Sky’s voice from ChatGPT and is currently seeking to clarify and potentially settle the dispute with Johansson’s representatives.

Johansson’s situation underscores broader issues related to AI and digital rights. The incident raises critical questions about consent, identity, and the safeguarding of individual likenesses in the digital age. Johansson seeks transparency and legislative measures to protect personal identities and ensure respectful and consensual use of one’s likeness in digital platforms, reflecting growing calls for clearer guidelines and more responsible use of technology in personal representation.