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Copyright Infringement By AI Generators


When you have worked hard to create unique content, such as artwork, books, recipes, articles, music, and other business ideas, it can be frustrating when someone else copies it without your permission and without any remuneration. The problem is that it’s not just people copying the work of others – we now have machines and programs to watch out for.

This is what several artists have been facing. A group of artists are suing several artificial intelligence art generators – Stability AI, DeviantArt, and Midjourney – for using their work to train AI tools. This lawsuit is the first of its kind but it likely won’t be the last.

The companies are being accused of copyright infringement by downloading billions of images from the internet without artists’ consent and then using special software to mimic their work. This is according to the class action lawsuit recently filed in California.

In November, the artists’ lawyers filed a separate proposed class action lawsuit against Microsoft’s GitHub and its business partner OpenAI for training AI systems by scraping copyrighted source code without permission.

AI is keeping artists from obtaining compensation for their works. Typically, when a purchaser seeks an image ‘in the style’ of a given artist, they must pay to commission that artist. That no longer has to happen with AI. Those purchasers can use the artist’s works – and the artist’s name – to generate new works without having to pay compensation.

But there is controversy about whether or not AI programs violate the intellectual property rights of artists when they are built on models that analyze the patterns of copyrighted works. The algorithms are what create the art generators. But the lawsuit is trying to determine if the AI firms infringed on the artists’ copyrights through the use of copyrighted works.

And it’s not just small, independent creators being impacted by AI. Big names, like Getty Images, are also being impacted. The company recently announced that it had initiated legal proceedings against Stability AI due to copying millions of its images. Getty Images alleges that Stability AI has chosen to ignore licensing options and legal protections to pursue its interests.

To be clear, these artists are not looking for an expansion of copyright. It’s pretty clear that art created by AI is theft, which means it should be considered infringement under current law. No new laws need to be created, but AI tools should abide by the existing ones. They don’t get a special pass.

Learn More About Copyright Infringement

The world is changing. While technology may make many things easier, it also creates new problems.

If your work has been stolen by somebody (or something) else, count on Orlando trademark & copyright lawyer B.F. Godfrey from Godfrey Legal. We’ll help you recover the compensation you deserve for the intellectual property you have created. Get started by scheduling a consultation with our office. Call (407) 890-0023 or fill out the online form.

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