ChatGPT comes for radio

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NPR is set to lay off 10% of its workforce this week in order to cover the network’s anticipated $30m budget shortfall, according to The Verge’s podcasting newsletter Hot Pod. The email noted that many employees had taken to Twitter to offer support to their colleagues, while some urged public radio fans to donate to their local stations. Morning Edition host Leila Fadel tweeted: “The layoffs become real and we will lose colleagues who work so hard to put on our programming everyday. We don’t know who will go but we know that everyone who is here now… we need them. Tough days ahead.” Meanwhile, Futuri has launched RadioGPT, which can optimise a radio station without people. It uses GPT-4 powered bots to perform tasks such as interstitial chats about music, weather and the news, in addition to corresponding with listeners. Futuri’s CEO believes the technology can “fill hours that stations can’t man anyway”. Additionally, indie platform Maximum Fun, which produces comedy and pop culture shows, is transitioning to a worker-owned cooperative model.

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