New Study Explores Copyright Implications of AI in Creative Industries

The US Copyright Office has recently initiated a study to examine the relationship between artificial intelligence (AI) and copyright law. The study aims to explore three key topics: the use of copyrighted materials to train AI models, the transparency and disclosure surrounding the use of copyrighted works, and the legal status of AI-generated outputs. Interested parties, including AI developers, startups, copyright experts, and music industry stakeholders, have been invited to submit written comments by October 18th, with reply comments due by November 15th.

The music industry has long been engaged in discussions around the complex intersection of AI and copyright. In their submissions, music rightsholders are likely to demand that AI companies obtain licenses to train their models on copyrighted content and maintain clear records of the process.

Music industry organizations, such as UK Music, have also expressed their position that purely AI-generated works should not be granted copyright protection. They argue that copyright should be reserved for creations that involve human creativity.

While the music industry’s stance on these matters is relatively well-known, it will be insightful to hear the perspectives from AI companies themselves. Until now, AI developers have not extensively shared their views on these issues publicly.

This study builds upon the Copyright Office’s previous work in this area. In 2020, it co-organized an event to discuss AI and copyright, dedicating a session to AI-generated music. Earlier this year, it published a statement of policy delving into the nuances of what constitutes “the product of human creativity” when AI tools are involved.

By conducting this study and inviting diverse stakeholders to participate, the Copyright Office is actively seeking to understand and address the challenges and opportunities that AI presents within the context of copyright law. The findings of this study have the potential to shape future legislation and policies surrounding the use of AI in creative industries.


What is the purpose of the US Copyright Office’s study?

The study aims to investigate the implications of artificial intelligence (AI) on copyright law, specifically focusing on the use of copyrighted works to train AI models, transparency and disclosure in AI usage, and the legal status of AI-generated outputs.

Who can participate in the study?

Interested parties, including AI developers, startups, copyright experts, and music industry stakeholders, are invited to submit written comments to the Copyright Office.

What are the music industry’s key concerns regarding AI and copyright?

Music rightsholders advocate for AI companies to obtain licenses when using copyrighted content to train their models and emphasize the importance of maintaining transparent and auditable records of the process. They also argue against granting copyright protection to purely AI-generated works.

Why is it significant to hear the perspectives of AI companies in this study?

The study provides an opportunity to gain insights into the views of AI developers, as they have not extensively expressed their opinions publicly on the intersection of AI and copyright. Understanding their perspectives can contribute to more comprehensive discussions and future policymaking.

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