Chinese state media outlet People’s Daily recently unveiled the newest member of its news anchor team, Ren Xiaorong, a virtual, AI-powered anchor that can allegedly provide 24/7 news coverage.
In a video published last Sunday by People’s Daily, a virtual young woman called Ren Xiaorong introduced herself to the world as an AI-driven chatbot that has learned the skills of ‘thousands of news anchors’ and that can constantly evolve based on viewers’ feedback. Beautiful and smartly dressed, Ren certainly looked like an agreeable news anchor, and if not for the synthesized, out-of-synch dubbing, you could hardly tell she wasn’t a real person. Using an app, anyone can ask the news anchor questions on a variety of topics, including education, epidemic prevention, housing, employment, environmental protection, and many others, but she can currently only deliver generic answers in line with the rhetoric favored by the Chinese Communist party.
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