A group of well-known American authors, including Jonathan Franzen, John Grisham, George R.R. Martin, and Jodi Picoult, has filed a lawsuit against OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, alleging copyright infringement. The Authors Guild filed the lawsuit in Manhattan federal court, claiming that OpenAI used their works without permission to train their language models. They argue that OpenAI copied their works and then fed them into their algorithms, which generate human-like text responses.
This lawsuit is part of a growing trend of legal actions against companies that develop popular generative AI tools, such as language models and image generators. In July, two authors also sued OpenAI, claiming that their books were used to train the company's chatbot without their consent. Getty Images has also sued Stability AI, accusing them of copying millions of Getty's images for training data for their text-to-image generator. Additionally, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI, alleging that they scraped licensed code to train their code generators. There are several other ongoing lawsuits related to generative AI technology.
The Authors Guild argues that these algorithms are central to the defendants' commercial operations and that their use constitutes large-scale theft. They are seeking class-action status for their lawsuit.
It is important to note that these are allegations and that the court will ultimately determine the validity of the claims. OpenAI has not yet responded publicly to the lawsuit. As the legal proceedings unfold, it will be interesting to see how the court addresses the issue of copyright infringement in the context of AI training.
These lawsuits highlight the ongoing challenges and legal debates surrounding the use of copyrighted material in training AI models. Balancing the need for innovation and technological advancement with the protection of intellectual property rights is a complex issue that will likely require careful consideration and legal precedent. As these cases proceed, they may have significant implications for the future development and use of generative AI technology.