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Authors seek compensation from AI companies for unauthorized work usage

July 19, 2023
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Over 8,000 authors, including renowned names such as James Patterson and Margaret Atwood, have requested leaders of top AI firms to seek permission and provide compensation before using their work to train AI models. The letter, published by The Authors Guild, calls out this "inherent injustice" and expresses the authors' concerns over the increasing use of AI systems in content generation.

Author Protest: Thousands of authors are raising their voices against the use of their writings in training AI without obtaining their consent or providing compensation.
  • The open letter emphasizes the importance of their works in the training of these AI models and calls for the AI companies to fairly compensate them.
  • There are also claims that many of the texts used by AI systems come from piracy websites.

  • Impact on Authors' Income: The increasing reliance on AI for content generation is impacting authors' income.
  • A report from The Authors Guild indicates that incomes for writers have declined by 42% between 2009 and 2019.
  • The median income for a full-time writer last year was down to $23,000.
  • AI systems like ChatGPT and Bard are cited as additional pressure on writers' incomes.

  • Legal Actions and Solutions: The Authors Guild hopes to avoid lawsuits by convincing AI companies to settle with the authors.
  • However, some authors, including Sarah Silverman, Paul Tremblay, and Mona Awad, have filed class action suits against Meta and OpenAI for using pirated copies of their work in training AI models.
  • OpenAI responded that its AI model, ChatGPT, is trained on licensed content, publicly available content, and content created by human AI trainers and users.

  • Broader Contention: The issue extends beyond authors, with AI companies also using data shared on the web for AI training.
  • Google has updated its privacy policy to state its right to collect and analyze almost any shared content on the web to train its AI systems.
  • Twitter and Reddit have taken actions to limit data scraping, leading to backlash from Elon Musk and subreddit communities.
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