Media tycoon Barry Diller, Chairman of IAC and Expedia, voiced his concerns about generative artificial intelligence and its impact on copyright law. He urged the need to redefine “fair use” to prevent AI from incorporating published material into its knowledge bases, arguing that such practices infringe upon the foundations of copyright law. Diller’s comments came amidst copyright infringement lawsuits filed by prominent authors, including George R.R. Martin and Jodi Picoult, against OpenAI. These remarks coincided with the Writers Guild of America’s tentative agreement with Hollywood studios to end a prolonged strike, a deal Diller criticized.
A Call to Redefine Fair Use for AI
Barry Diller’s primary contention revolves around the redefinition of “fair use” within the realm of artificial intelligence. He emphasized the need to establish that there should be no such concept as “fair use” for AI, providing legal standing for creators whose work is utilized by AI systems. Diller’s concerns align with the ongoing debate about whether AI can access and incorporate copyrighted content into its knowledge base.
Authors Sue OpenAI for Copyright Infringement
High-profile authors, including George R.R. Martin and Jodi Picoult, have initiated legal action against OpenAI, alleging copyright infringement. This legal battle has brought the issue of AI’s use of copyrighted material to the forefront of intellectual property debates.
Dissatisfaction with the WGA-Studio Deal
Diller expressed dissatisfaction with the Writers Guild of America’s tentative agreement with Hollywood studios. He criticized the deal’s purportedly inadequate measures to protect writers from AI’s usage of their work. Although the agreement secures compensation for writers contributing to scripts, it also grants studios the right to employ AI models using writers’ content.
Fair Use Doctrine and AI Indexing
The fair use doctrine under U.S. copyright law permits limited use of copyrighted works without obtaining licenses or providing compensation. Critics argue that generative AI and language-based models infringe on this doctrine by indexing entire bodies of work within their knowledge bases. This debate centers on whether AI’s incorporation of copyrighted material constitutes fair use or copyright infringement.
Diller’s Disagreement with OpenAI’s CEO
Barry Diller revealed a fundamental disagreement with Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, regarding the interpretation of fair use. While Altman contends that fair use allows for the inclusion of publishers’ content, Diller’s perspective opposes this stance, emphasizing that fair use should not permit such comprehensive usage.
The Role of Shutterstock in AI Compensation
Shutterstock, a stock media service that partnered with OpenAI in 2021, established a contributor fund to compensate creators whose intellectual property is employed in AI content generation. Sam Altman acknowledged Shutterstock’s role in the training of OpenAI’s generative media AI, DALL-E. The contributor’s fund exemplifies efforts to address the ethical and legal implications of AI’s use of copyrighted material.