Facebook will now pay for your voice – here's how to cash in

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To improve its speech recognition algorithms, Facebook is now offering to pay some of its users for voice recordings. These snippets will be used to 'teach' systems used in devices like its Facebook Portal smart speakers and cameras.

Tech giants including Facebook. Google and Amazon found themselves in hot water last year, after it transpired that employees and contractors were transcribing users' voice recordings.

The clips were anonymized, but the practice raised questions about security and privacy, with workers being given access to potentially sensitive recordings, including ones where a smart speaker was triggered accidentally.

To avoid such problems in future, Facebook has decided to make things totally transparent and pay users in exchange for specific spoken snippets. 

How it works

As The Verge explains, the new program is called 'Pronunciations', and is part of the Facebook Viewpoints market research app, which rewards users for helping the company out with testing and surveys.

If you're in the US, over 18 years old, and have at least 75 Facebook friends, you could qualify to take part in Pronunciations. If so, you'll be asked to say the words 'Hey Portal', followed by the name of one of your pals.

It's no get-rich-quick scheme, though. You'll receive 200 points for each recording, and when you've earned 1,000 points, you can cash out for a cool $5 in your PayPal account. It's up to you whether the effort justifies the returns.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of TechRadar's sister site Advnture. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better)