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Pamela Almand on Being a Narrator, Being a Pilot, and Amelia Earhart

Pamela Almand on Being a Narrator, Being a Pilot, and Amelia Earhart | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Pam Almand, who recently narrated Amelia Earhart’s memoir, 20 HOURS, 40 MINUTES, is also a pilot who knows what it’s like to fly alone across the ocean. “I built my flying time by ferrying planes solo across the Atlantic. In my final few flights, I piloted two-seater single-engine airplanes, just the way Earhart had. I trained in the 1980s, but we used the same navigation system she used in the 1920s—dead reckoning!” she laughs. “Basically, you determine the heading and calculate the time it’ll take based on the forecast winds. Then you fly across the Atlantic, and when the estimated time arrives, you hope you see land.”
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Spotify Makes a Bet on Audiobooks - The New York Times

Spotify Makes a Bet on Audiobooks - The New York Times | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
The streaming service that transformed the music industry is expanding into audiobooks, and will offer more than 300,000 titles on a pay-per-book model.
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With Audiobooks Launching in the U.S. Today, Is the Home for All the Audio You Love —

With Audiobooks Launching in the U.S. Today,  Is the Home for All the Audio You Love — | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
The Spotify you know and love is getting a lot bigger with the addition of a catalog of content that users have been requesting for years: audiobooks. Starting today, Spotify listeners in the U.S. will be able to purchase and listen to more than 300,000 audiobook titles—making our platform a true all-in-one destination for everyone’s... Read more »
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How this 34-year-old mom makes 6 figures as a book narrator: ‘I get to work my dream job from home’

How this 34-year-old mom makes 6 figures as a book narrator: ‘I get to work my dream job from home’ | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Audiobook narrator Natalie Naudus shares how she went from being a freelance musician to working her six-figure dream job from home.
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Pamela Almand on Being a Narrator, Being a Pilot, and Amelia Earhart

Pamela Almand on Being a Narrator, Being a Pilot, and Amelia Earhart | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Pam Almand, who recently narrated Amelia Earhart’s memoir, 20 HOURS, 40 MINUTES, is also a pilot who knows what it’s like to fly alone across the ocean. “I built my flying time by ferrying planes solo across the Atlantic. In my final few flights, I piloted two-seater single-engine airplanes, just the way Earhart had. I trained in the 1980s, but we used the same navigation system she used in the 1920s—dead reckoning!” she laughs. “Basically, you determine the heading and calculate the time it’ll take based on the forecast winds. Then you fly across the Atlantic, and when the estimated time arrives, you hope you see land.”
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That Voice You’re Hearing? It Might Be Julia Whelan. - The New York Times

That Voice You’re Hearing? It Might Be Julia Whelan. - The New York Times | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Julia Whelan is one of the most in-demand audiobook narrators working today. With her novel, “Thank You for Listening,” she’s telling a story of her own.
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Scott Brick Joins the JMC Demos Team as Director of New Audiobooks Division

Scott Brick Joins the JMC Demos Team as Director of New Audiobooks Division | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
It is with great pleasure that I can announce the expansion of the JMC Demos brand into Audiobooks, led by our new Audiobooks Division Director Scott Brick. As a demo producer, I’m a firm believer in the adage that to create a quality reel, the producer needs to play in the genre being produced, whether […]
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The Very Human Pleasure of Being Read To - The New York Times

The Very Human Pleasure of Being Read To - The New York Times | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
From a Terry Pratchett fantasy to memoirs set in Northern Ireland and on a pig farm, these stories are most memorable for the voices telling them.
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‘It’s like somebody’s whispering in your ear’: Inside the expansive, intimate world of audiobooks

‘It’s like somebody’s whispering in your ear’: Inside the expansive, intimate world of audiobooks | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Audiobooks are one of the fastest-growing segments of not just the publishing industry, but the entire media and entertainment market
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What Makes a Great, or Terrible, Audiobook Performance?

What Makes a Great, or Terrible, Audiobook Performance? | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
A critical essay about audiobook acting, saying that actors need to emote less and read more flatly than Diane Keaton does on her Joan Didion recordings.
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Wonderful, and completely validates Paul Reuben’s eternal admonitions…
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Fantasy Author Raises $15.4 Million in 24 Hours to Self-Publish - The New York Times

Fantasy Author Raises $15.4 Million in 24 Hours to Self-Publish - The New York Times | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Brandon Sanderson set out to raise $1 million on Kickstarter in 30 days to fund four new books. He blew past it in about 35 minutes.
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It’s only a matter of time before this approach maps across to audiobooks…
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Debating Audiobook Narrators; AI, Human or Both?

Debating Audiobook Narrators; AI, Human or Both? | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
The idea of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) as audiobook narrators, instead of humans, has become a focused topic of discussion in audiobook circles lately. In October, a PW article by columnist Thad McIlroy, examined the debate, sparking some reaction from both sides; professional narrators and publishers. In that piece, Mcllroy, profiled several players in this niche area of the still-developing digital audiobook segment. As the audiobook industry begins to look at the pros and cons of newer technologies, such as AI narration, a growing number of people are joining the conversation. There are basically two schools of thought around this issue.
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The comments are as good or better than the article…
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AI Influence on Audiobooks Grows—As Does Controversy

AI Influence on Audiobooks Grows—As Does Controversy | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
The dawn of AI-enabled audiobook narration has led to fierce industry debate.
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Reasonably well researched and written…
tattoovagabondstore's comment, February 28, 4:22 AM
NICE
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Listening to Books | Online Only

My first audiobook was Flo Gibson’s recording of The Mill on the Floss, which, by the way, is one of the very great audiobooks: the sound is scratchy, but Gibson’s voice is confident and almost conspiratorial, warm and intimate and pleased to be recounting a story she knows you will be glad to have heard. I listened to it running by the Charles River with earbuds in my ears.
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Deepfake Audio Has A Tell – Researchers Use Fluid Dynamics To Spot Artificial Imposter Voices

Deepfake Audio Has A Tell – Researchers Use Fluid Dynamics To Spot Artificial Imposter Voices | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Deepfake audio can be very convincing, but it is possible to discern it.
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Actors worry that AI is taking centre stage

Artificial intelligence
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Actors worry that AI is taking centre stage

Synthetic voices may not be as good but they can still threaten human talent’s work and rights 

SARAH O'CONNOR 

 We used to think that artificial intelligence would come for the bean-counters first. It seemed reasonable to assume that AI would transform or even eliminate jobs in sectors such as accountancy and insurance, while work associated with human traits such as creativity would be relatively untouched. But this theory looks flakier by the day. One group of workers who are really beginning to worry about AI are actors and other performance artists. 

A survey this year by Equity, the UK union for actors and other performing arts workers, https://www.ft.com/content/7c26a93f-88ec-4a50-8529-7df81af86208 ; found that 65 per cent of members thought AI posed a threat to employment opportunities in the sector, rising to 93 per cent of audio artists. This wasn’t just an amorphous fear about the future: more than a third of members had seen job listings for work involving AI and almost a fifth had undertaken some of this work. A range of AI start-ups are developing tools for use in film and audio, from making actors look and sound younger to creating AI voices that can be used for marketing campaigns, consumer assistants or even audiobook narration. Audio is such a popular medium now that companies need lots of it, but human actors are expensive and nowhere near as flexible as an AI voice, which can be made to say anything at the push of a button. These companies typically hire actors to provide hours’ worth of audio which can then be turned into a voice-for-hire. VocaliD, for example, offers a range of voices such as “Malik” (“warm, soothing, urban”) “Terri” (“educated, optimistic, sophisticated’‘) and “AI Very British Voice” (“trustworthy, warm, calm”.) Sonantic, another AI company which was just acquired by Spotify, creates voices that can laugh, shout or cry. Its voices are often used by video game companies in the production process so they can play around with different scripts. They’re not as good as humans, but they don’t need to be. Industry experts say no one is going to use AI to narrate the audiobook of a bestselling novel, but there is still a market to be tapped in the vast number of lower-profile books that are published or self-published every year. Audiobook.ai, for example, says it can create an audiobook in 10 minutes with 146 voices to choose from in 43 languages. Voice actors aren’t just worried about losing work to these synthetic vocalists. They’re also worried about their rights when they help to create AI personas. Both Equity and SAG- AFTRA, its US equivalent, say they are seeing contracts for AI work that give tech companies the right to use an actor’s likeness or voice irrevocably and in perpetuity. Non-disclosure agreements are also common. Young actors, in particular, might be tempted by the upfront fee only to regret the long-term implications. What kind of implications? Once your voice or face is in the wild and you have no control over it, you might find it associated with something violent when you had your heart set on a career in children’s films. Or you might find your likeness is working for a competitor to a company you now want to join. As Equity explains in its guidance to members doing AI- related work: “If at a later date you are asked to work on an exclusive basis for another client, would the presence of your AI voice and the possibility of it working for competitors be https://www.ft.com/content/7c26a93f-88ec-4a50-8529-7df81af86208 2/3 9/6/22, 12:11 PM Actors worry that AI is taking centre stage | Financial Times problematic contractually?” Equity is calling on the UK government to update copyright law to make sure performers have the right to control AI-made “reproductions” of performances. Unions on both sides of the Atlantic are also trying to make agreements with tech companies that give performers royalties when their AI voice or image is used, as well as the right to approve its use in each new scenario. Some companies already do this: Sonantic says it has a profit-share agreement with voice actors, for example. There are opportunities as well as threats. With decent contract agreements in place, it could be very helpful for actors to have a source of passive income from the AI version of themselves, which is out there diligently doing work which might be boring but still brings in some money. AI also opens up the possibility of more flexible work for people who can’t always be on set, whether because of health or family reasons. That said, the broader lesson for the world of work is that AI doesn’t have to be “as good as humans” to begin to disrupt things for ordinary workers. In Hollywood, as in the economy as a whole, the superstars will be fine — everyone else will have to stay on their toes. sarah.oconnor@ft.com Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2022. All rights reserved. https://www.ft.com/content/7c26a93f-88ec-4a50-8529-7df81af86208 3/3
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How a Startup in a Garage Grew into an Influential Media Publisher | THE BIG THRILL

How a Startup in a Garage Grew into an Influential Media Publisher | THE BIG THRILL | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Blackstone Publishing: How a Startup in a Garage Grew into an Influential Media Publisher By Debbie Burke One day in the 1980s, entrepreneur Craig Black was stuck in gridlock on a southern California freeway. As he scanned thousands of vehicles around him stretching as far as the eye could see, realization struck him that people
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'AudioFile' Turns 30

'AudioFile' Turns 30 | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Robin Whitten turned her passion for audiobooks into one of the first publications to cover that medium. As 'AudioFile' marks its 30th birthday this summer, Whitten reflected on how the venture initially got off the ground, how it has evolved and where it’s headed next.

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Inside the Push to Diversify the Book Business - The New York Times

Inside the Push to Diversify the Book Business - The New York Times | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
For generations, America’s major publishers focused almost entirely on white readers. Now a new cadre of executives like Lisa Lucas is trying to open up the industry.
simplfulfillment's comment, July 6, 8:36 PM
cool
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Spotify is acquiring Sonantic, the AI voice platform used to simulate Val Kilmer’s voice in Top Gun Maverick – TechCrunch

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New Japanese Toy Synthesizes Parent Voices to Read Stories to Kids

New Japanese Toy Synthesizes Parent Voices to Read Stories to Kids | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Japanese toy maker Takara Tomy has launched a smart speaker for children that can synthesize a parent’s voice to read..
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Audible Grows Hollywood Focus As Stars Ink Podcast Deals –

Audible Grows Hollywood Focus As Stars Ink Podcast Deals – | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
The subscription platform, now powered by Amazon, is bolstering stars’ production shingles and boasts a greater degree of creative freedom: “Audio is much cheaper, [so] we can take much more risk and say, ‘Let’s try that and let’s see.’”
SpectacularJourneys's comment, June 10, 12:32 AM
nice
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The power of audiobooks: a novelist and a narrator tell how to work it

The power of audiobooks: a novelist and a narrator tell how to work it | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Thinking of getting paid to record audiobooks? Hear about it from a pro: Liz Wiley.
SpectacularJourneys's comment, June 10, 12:33 AM
good
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Duvall Hecht, whose daily grind to L.A. led to Books on Tape, dies at 91

Duvall Hecht, whose daily grind to L.A. led to Books on Tape, dies at 91 | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
Books on Tape founder Duvall Hecht dies; won gold medal in Olympics
tattoovagabondstore's comment, February 28, 4:22 AM
GOOD
SpectacularJourneys's comment, June 10, 12:33 AM
nice
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Kate Runde promoted to VP of Acquisitions; Troy Otte promoted to VP of Production Operations

Kate Runde promoted to VP of Acquisitions; Troy Otte promoted to VP of Production Operations | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
February 14, 2022, Los Angeles - Podium is thrilled to announce that Kate Runde has been promoted to VP of Acquisitions and Troy Otte has been promoted to VP of Production Operations. They have both contributed enormously to Podium Audio’s business in the years since they joined the company so this
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Synthetic Voices Want to Take Over Audiobooks | WIRED

Synthetic Voices Want to Take Over Audiobooks | WIRED | Audiobook Business News | Scoop.it
As computer-generated voices become more sophisticated, the number of audiobooks—including from Amazon, Microsoft, and Google—is set to explode.
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