BBC presenter discusses AI in newsrooms

Could Artificial Intelligence lead to news anchors losing their jobs? BBC Radio 4 Presenter, Charles Carroll, certainly thinks it could happen in the future. He says: “Artificial Intelligence could save a great deal of money”.

When China’s state-run news agency, Xinhua, introduced their newest addition to the newsroom – two Artificial Intelligence news anchors, people were surprised. Surprised that this could be a thing of the future.

The first, an English speaking presenter appeared on television screens dressed in a sharp suit, looking like any other anchor, until he opened his mouth. In a robotic voice, he began: “Hello, you are watching English news programme, I am AI news anchor.”

The second is a Chinese speaking anchor who introduced himself in the same way.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is defined as the development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence.

The AI presenters were created through a collaboration with Chinese search engine, Sogou. They mimic the movements and expressions of their real life counterparts Zhang Zhao and Qui Hao, who the AI anchors are modelled on.

See also: Could a Black Mirror dystopian world actually become our future?

Xinhua have said the virtual anchors can work 24 hours a day from any location and aim to reduce production costs.

Voice of London spoke to BBC Radio 4 news presenter, Charles Carroll, about his thoughts on AI in newsrooms:

This is a big step for China who have plans to turn China into an AI world leader by 2030.


Words: Daisy Newman | Subbing: Taylor Paatalo


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