Sounds like even the Theranos CEO's voice was fake

Originally published at:


I keep seeing this as if it’s unusual. I’ve been coached explicitly to do this multiple times in the workplace for over ten years. I consider it a form of harassment at this point but it’s totally ubiquitous. It’s something women are often encouraged to do. I dislike the crunched throat feeling so I go for the “radio announcer low tones” when I speak. The natural understanding though is that women are not worth listening to or should not expect respect when they speak unless they can do so in baritone.


Yeah, I don’t think people should label her voice as “all an act”. She may have cultivated it to be more persuasive, but in a corporate world where women are given short shrift it’s an understandable technique for any woman to use even if it’s sad and discouraging that they may find need of doing so.


Yep. I’ve heard this too. Listen to Oprah Winfrey’s voice sometime. She got her start in radio because of it’s rich and deep tones. Her voice is the one I try to emulate when I want adults to pay attention.

Just as a side note, I wonder if the fact that deep voices tend to be connected to big people causes people to be deferential on a subconscious level, just in case you piss said large person off.


And unfortunately her fraud is going to be generalized such that future women who do make real breakthroughs are going to be questioned…not that they weren’t going to be questioned anyway, but this will just be the example that people bring up.


Well, she wouldn’t be the first one.

I have to agree with the rest of the thread that this hardly counts as deception, though.
You use the means at your disposal to get your point across with maximum efficiency - anything else would just be wasteful.

I’m loving the pearl-clutching by these talking heads questioning the “authenticity” of Holmes’ voice with no recognition of the sheer amount of plastic surgery that they’ve inflicted upon themselves.


Deep fake?

I always thought her voice sounded weird, but didn’t want to judge.


John Carreyrou mentions this briefly in his book. Greg Baney (who worked at SpaceX) reported that she dropped the baritone occasionally. Page 117 of the kindle version. Baney is sympathetic for reasons stated by other posters: being a woman in Silicon Valley sucks.


I just want to say @jlw that we’ve been discussing this on the bbs community for a while now. We happy mutants beat you to it. (Below the last time I mentioned it)


People still start threads in the other categories? I thought we turned that off.

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No. I mean in the threads regarding Theranos over the last few weeks…this topic has been brought up (I know by me at least a few times now).

Just saying the community was on top of this before the HBO special and media outlets caught on. :grin:

Mark also tells me he’s mentioned it in other posts. I saw the news this AM and thought that folks always find news about this woman and her fall from grace interesting.

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Agreed wholeheartedly. And this particular tidbit is a really weird one…why change your voice like that?

remembered your post from last thread, leaving satisfied.


That’s kind of like asking why try to look taller. There are a number of factors that make people generally more credible based on the biases of human psychology. And even though the voice sounds non-typical to me, she was wildly successful with it and the rest of her scamming techniques.


For the sake of those of us who lived through that, could you please keep that sort of content behind spoiler tags.


The entire cast of The Walking Dead use a fake deep voice and it is the main reason why I couldn’t stand to watch the show, so cheesy!

And now back to Theranos…

Folks have been really clear as to a very likely reason why, I believe. This is not one of her crimes or misdoings but a sign of how business culture is hardwired to make women jump though hoops.