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Category Archives: Copyright

Why The New York Times might win its copyright lawsuit against OpenAI

Ars Technica: “The day after The New York Times sued OpenAI for copyright infringement, the author and systems architect Daniel Jeffries wrote an essay-length tweet arguing that the Times “has a near zero probability of winning” its lawsuit. As we write this, it has been retweeted 288 times and received 885,000 views. “Trying to get everyone to license training data is not going to work because that’s not what copyright is about,” Jeffries wrote. “Copyright law is about preventing people from producing exact copies or near exact copies of content and posting it for commercial gain. Period. Anyone who tells you otherwise is lying or simply does not understand how copyright works.” This article is written by two authors. One of us is a journalist who has been on the copyright beat for nearly 20 years. The other is a law professor who has taught dozens of courses on IP and Internet law. We’re pretty sure we understand how copyright works. And we’re here to warn the AI community that it needs to take these lawsuits seriously. In its blog post responding to the Times lawsuit, OpenAI wrote that “training AI models using publicly available Internet materials is fair use, as supported by long-standing and widely accepted precedents.” The most important of these precedents is a 2015 decision that allowed Google to scan millions of copyrighted books to create a search engine. We expect OpenAI to argue that the Google ruling allows OpenAI to use copyrighted documents to train its generative models. Stability AI and Anthropic will undoubtedly make similar arguments as they face copyright lawsuits of their own. These defendants could win in court—but they could lose, too. As we’ll see, AI companies are on shakier legal ground than Google was in its book search case. And the courts don’t always side with technology companies in cases where companies make copies to build their systems. The story of MP3.com illustrates the kind of legal peril AI companies could face in the coming years…”

Judge rejects most ChatGPT copyright claims from book authors

Ars Technica: “A US district judge in California has largely sided with OpenAI, dismissing the majority of claims raised by authors alleging that large language models powering ChatGPT were illegally trained on pirated copies of their books without their permission. By allegedly repackaging original works as ChatGPT outputs, authors alleged, OpenAI’s most popular chatbot was just… Continue Reading

Microsoft announces AI newsroom projects with Semafor and others, as NYT lawsuit looms

GeekWire: “Microsoft announced five projects to help news organizations incorporate generative artificial intelligence into their operations, building on its existing efforts to use technology to support the role of journalism in democracy. The company will collaborate on different initiatives with Semafor, the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, the Online News Association, the GroundTruth… Continue Reading

The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe

1845. “The Raven” is published in The Evening Mirror in New York, the 1st publication with the name of the author, Edgar Allan Poe. Its publication made Poe popular in his lifetime, although it did not bring him much financial success. The poem was soon reprinted, parodied, & illustrated. Critical opinion is divided as to… Continue Reading

What Happened to My Search Engine?

Ted Gioia – Or why tech upgrades are now mostly downgrades: “…Here are the things missing from the original search engines. They didn’t practice 24/7 surveillance of users. They didn’t sell user’s private information. They didn’t fill up search results with garbage in order to collect placement fees. They didn’t manipulate users—prodding them to use… Continue Reading

OpenAI warns copyright crackdown could doom ChatGPT

Telegraph: “The maker of ChatGPT has warned that a ban on using news and books to train chatbots would doom the development of artificial intelligence. OpenAI has told peers that it would be “impossible” to create services such as ChatGPT if it were prevented from relying on copyrighted works, as it seeks to influence potential… Continue Reading

More Than Just Mickey: Chaplin, Peter Pan, ‘Western Front’ Enter Public Domain

Rolling Stone “Winnie the Pooh’s Tigger, films by Buster Keaton, Lady Chatterley’s Lover, and — yes — the Mickey Mouse in Steamboat Willie are now fair use as of Jan. 1, Public Domain Day 2024. Jan. 1, isn’t just New Year’s Day — it’s also Public Domain Day, where thousands of cinematic treasures, literary classics,… Continue Reading

Times Sues OpenAI and Microsoft Over AI Use of Copyrighted Work

The New York Times [read free]: “The New York Times sued OpenAI and Microsoft for copyright infringement on Wednesday, opening a new front in the increasingly intense legal battle over the unauthorized use of published work to train artificial intelligence technologies. The Times is the first major American media organization to sue the companies, the… Continue Reading

Free and liberated ebooks carefully produced for the true book lover

“Standard Ebooks is a volunteer-driven project that produces new editions of public domain ebooks that are lovingly formatted, open source, free of U.S. copyright restrictions, and free of cost. Ebook projects like Project Gutenberg transcribe ebooks and make them available for the widest number of reading devices. Standard Ebooks takes ebooks from sources like Project… Continue Reading

Legal Implications in the Brave New AI World: Copyright Infringement and Training Sets

“Keeping up with the many legal implications in our post-ChatGPT world is increasingly challenging. Stories abound with legal suits filed against OpenAI, Meta, and others for training AI models with copyrighted content. In this lunch and learn discussion October 23, 2023 [YouTube with accompanying full transcript], Mark Gross, President of Data Conversion Laboratory, and his… Continue Reading