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AI Localisation is an area Crunchyroll is "Focused On"

AI Localisation is an area Crunchyroll is "Focused On"

Written by Ross Locksley on 28 Feb 2024

CEO of Crunchyroll Rahul Purini has been speaking to The Verge wherein he spoke about the company's approach to the contentious subject of AI Localisation. 

Speaking on the company structure, he noted how localisation formed one of the largest teams within the company:

"Our localization teams, because we are not only just taking this content with the Japanese audio and subtitling it into 10-plus languages, we are also dubbing it into 10-plus languages. And so we have teams that are focused on localizing, and we do that in-house for most of our territories. So that’s another big team."

As most companies look to be as efficient as possible, it's no surprise that Crunchyroll is looking to AI to perhaps cut this cost-centre out of the business.

"A.I. is definitely something we think about at a lot of different workflows in the organization. Right now, one of the areas we're very focused on testing is subtitling and our closed captioning where we go from speech to text. 'How do we improve and optimize our processes where we can get the subtitles done in various languages across the world faster so that we can launch as close to the Japanese release as possible?' So that's definitely an area that we're focused on."

Having experimented a lot with Descript I can personally attest to the fact that AI can do a very accurate job of speech-to-text translations (for a project you'll see on UKA in the future) so it's certainly a viable option. Given the amount of issues surrounding human-level deliberate mistranslation of series such as I think I turned my childhood friend into a girl, Lovely Complex and Dragon Maid to name but a few infamous examples, it would seem that both Western and Japanese companies are taking the idea of direct translation via machine learning very seriously. 

Ross Locksley
About Ross Locksley

Ross founded the UK Anime Network waaay back in 1995 and works in and around the anime world in his spare time.

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