AI-Generated Artwork Not Eligible for Copyright, US District Judge Rules

In a landmark decision on August 18, 2023, US District Judge Beryl A. Howell ruled that artwork generated solely by artificial intelligence (AI) cannot be copyrighted. The ruling was made in response to a lawsuit against the US Copyright Office, which had previously denied a copyright request by Stephen Thaler for an image produced using his Creativity Machine algorithm.

The ruling made by Judge Howell stressed the fundamental premise of copyright law by noting that it has “never been granted to work that was ‘absent any guiding human hand'” and that “human authorship is a bedrock requirement of copyright.” Both of these statements were made in reference to the fact that copyright has “never been granted to work that was ‘absent any guiding human hand.'” Even if technological advancements are constantly being made, this viewpoint is consistent with the position taken by the United States Copyright Office, which maintains that the only “works of human creation” are entitled to legal protection under copyright laws.

The case received a lot of attention as a result of Thaler’s repeated efforts to register the AI-generated picture “as a work-for-hire to the owner of the Creativity Machine.” If this had been effective, it would have acknowledged the AI as the author while allowing Thaler to keep ownership of the work. However, none of his endeavors were successful since they were all greeted with failure.

Attorney Ryan Abbot of Brown Neri Smith & Khan LLP, who represents Stephen Thaler, has said that he disagrees with the court’s reading of the Copyright Act and suggested that an appeal of the verdict would be filed.

This judgement highlights the ongoing dispute around AI and copyright law, which is especially relevant given that AI is continuing to play an increasingly important role in creative sectors. As artificial intelligence (AI) technology progress and their applications in art and other industries increase, it is expected that the legal environment will encounter further obstacles and evolve as a result.

For now, the message is clear: while AI can be a tool for creation, the human element remains central to the concept of copyright in the United States.

Image source: Shutterstock


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EU Drafts AI Bill to Address Copyright Concerns

Concerns over the usage of copyrighted material have risen to the forefront as the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the production of content becomes more commonplace. In response to these concerns, legislators in the European Union have approved a draft law with the intention of regulating both the firms that produce the technology and the technology itself.

The law, which is a component of the Artificial Intelligence Act of the EU, intends to categorize AI technologies according to the amount of danger they pose. The risk categories range from acceptable to unacceptable, with unacceptable being the highest. The use of high-risk instruments won’t be completely outlawed, but rather they’ll be subject to more stringent disclosure rules. It will soon be necessary for generative AI tools such as ChatGPT and Midjourney, among others, to report any usage of copyrighted resources made in the course of their AI training.

During the subsequent phase of debates among the legislatures and member states, the particulars of the law will be refined to their final form. According to Svenja Hahn, a member of the European Parliament, the bill in its current form strikes a balance between excessive levels of monitoring and excessive levels of regulation. This balance protects people while also encouraging innovation and contributing to economic growth.

The data watchdog for the European Union has voiced worry about the possible difficulties that artificial intelligence (AI) businesses in the United States may have if they do not comply with the General Data Protection Regulations.

Additionally, the European think tank known as Eurofi, which is comprised of organizations from both the public and private sectors, has published a magazine that features an entire section devoted to the applications of AI and machine learning in the financial sector of the EU. All of the mini-essays featured in this section touched on the forthcoming Artificial Intelligence Act in some way. They were on the topic of artificial intelligence (AI) innovation and regulation inside the EU, namely for usage in the financial sector.

One of the authors, Georgina Bulkeley, who is also the director for EMEA financial services solutions at Google Cloud, stressed the significance of AI regulation by stating that the technology is “too vital not to regulate. In addition to this, it is of insufficient significance to not properly regulate.”

In general, the proposed legislation represents a substantial advance toward the goal of regulating the use of AI and works protected by copyright in the EU. As the technology continues to improve and become more widespread in a variety of sectors, it is essential to ensure that it is used in a transparent and ethical manner in order to safeguard both customers and companies.


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EU to Regulate AI Use of Copyrighted Material

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in content creation has led to controversies regarding its use of copyrighted material. In response, the European Union (EU) has passed a draft bill aimed at regulating the use of AI tools in such scenarios. The bill is part of the EU’s Artificial Intelligence Act and was proposed as draft rules almost two years ago.

The new bill will classify AI tools according to their risk level, ranging from minimal and limited to unacceptable. High-risk tools will not be banned outright but will be subjected to stricter transparency procedures. The bill will also oblige generative AI tools, including ChatGPT and Midjourney, to disclose any use of copyrighted materials in AI training.

The legislation has been seen as a middle ground between too much surveillance and over-regulation that protects citizens while also fostering innovation and boosting the economy. Svenja Hahn, a member of the European Parliament, commented on the bill’s current status, stating that it strikes a balance between protecting citizens and fostering innovation.

The use of AI in the financial industry was also discussed in the latest edition of Eurofi, a European think tank composed of enterprises in the public and private sectors. The publication included a section on AI and machine learning applications in finance in the EU, which included five mini-essays on AI innovation and regulation within the EU. All of the essays touched on the upcoming Artificial Intelligence Act.

Georgina Bulkeley, the director for EMEA financial services solutions at Google Cloud, stated that AI is too important not to regulate and that it is too important not to regulate well. These developments come after the EU’s data watchdog expressed concerns about potential issues that AI companies in the United States may face if they do not comply with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulations.

In conclusion, the EU’s move to regulate AI use of copyrighted material is an attempt to strike a balance between protecting citizens and fostering innovation. With the increasing use of AI in various industries, it is important to have regulations in place to ensure that AI tools are used ethically and responsibly.


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