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US Judge Rules out Copyrights for Purely AI-Generated Content

US federal judge: AI-generated media lacks copyright protection; ruling highlights limits of artificial intelligence in creativity.

ShahZaib Ahmed



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As per a ruling that the US federal judge issued on the 18th of August, artificial intelligence has witnessed a setback. The judge said that the media and art generated solely through AI cannot outcompete human ingenuity. In this regard, the judge has ruled out copyright protection for such content. According to the judge, completely AI-generated content does not come under the fold of copyright protection.

US Court Rules Against Copyright Protection for Completely AI-Generated Artworks

The respective ruling was given in response to the filing made by Stephen Thaler. The person attempted to register an AI-generated artwork in 2018 under the U.S. Copyright Office. Nonetheless, the office rejected the copyright application of Thaler and stated that the artwork did not have human authorship.

Related: US Judge Favors Human Originality in a Decree in an AI-Related Copyright Case

The respective decline from the office paved the way for a lawsuit filing from Thaler confronting the US Copyright Office. In that filing, he also mentioned the agency’s top official called Perlmutter last year. Thaler asserted that he authored the computer system responsible for generating the respective artwork. In this way, he tried to convince the judge that the authorship of the respective artwork automatically goes to him.

The Judge Acknowledges the Complexity of AI Technology

Nonetheless, the judge did not agree with Thaler and endorsed the decision that the Copyright Office made. In addition to this, the judge also rejected the notion that authorship can go beyond humans concerning copyrights. Moreover, he acknowledged that artificial intelligence could develop more complicated cases.

The judge added that the copyright protection’s extent over AI content has not yet been determined. The case of Thaler is different from several former lawsuits. They mostly dealt with whether AI firms have illegally utilized content under copyright.

Apart from the legal mechanism, YouTube has a strategy to utilize AI technology for music’s AI enforcement. In the meantime, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) has called for regulation concerning the current writer strike.

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