Kuwait media outlet unveils AI-generated news presenter

AI Video & Visuals

With artificial intelligence (AI) sweeping across almost every other professional field, a Kuwaiti media outlet has introduced a virtual news presenter reading online bulletins generated using AI.

“Fedha” appeared on the Kuwait News website’s Twitter account on Saturday as an image of a woman wearing a black jacket and white t-shirt with revealing light-colored hair.

“I’m Feda, the first Kuwaiti presenter to cover artificial intelligence for Kuwait News. What news do you like? Let me know what you think,” she said in classical Arabic.

This site is affiliated with The Kuwait Times, founded in 1961 as the first English-language daily newspaper in the Gulf region.

Abdullah Boftain, deputy editor-in-chief of both media, said the move tests AI’s potential to deliver “new and innovative content.”

In the future, Fedha may adopt a Kuwaiti accent and post breaking news on the site’s Twitter account, which has 1.2 million followers, he said.

“Fedha is a popular old name in Kuwait that refers to the metal silver. Robots are always imagined to be silver and metal, so we combined the two,” said Boftain.

According to Bokhtein, the presenter’s blond hair and light-colored eyes reflect Kuwait, an oil-rich country, and the diverse population of foreigners.

“Fedha represents everyone,” he said.

Her first 13-second video generated a massive reaction on social media, including journalists.

The rapid rise of AI globally promises benefits such as healthcare and elimination of routine tasks, but also poses potential for the spread of misinformation, threats to certain jobs, and threats to artistic integrity. There are also concerns such as

Kuwait ranked 158th out of 180 countries and territories in Reporters Without Borders (RSF)’s 2022 Press Freedom Index.

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