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  • 18 Jun, 2024

A US newspaper has accused companies of using millions of articles without permission to help train chatbots.

The New York Times sued OpenAI and Microsoft for copyright infringement in an effort to stop the practice of using stories to train chatbots.

The newspaper filed a complaint in US federal court in Manhattan on Wednesday, alleging that the company's powerful artificial intelligence (AI) models were used to train millions of articles without permission and that copyright infringement could reach billions of dollars alone on the paper. The Times said OpenAI and Microsoft were developing technology to "unlawfully use The Times to create competing AI products" and "threaten The Times' ability to provide this service."

The lawsuit says the two AI chatbot companies are "attempting to take advantage of The New York Times' extensive investment in journalism to create alternative products without permission or payment." The Times, one of America's most respected news organizations, is demanding that the companies be ordered to stop using its content and destroy the data they have already collected.

The New York Times said the breach could result in "billions of dollars in statutory and actual damages," though it did not ask for a specific amount. way to fight

As a result of this process, the New York Times took a different view of the rapid growth of AI chatbots than other media outlets that have signed content deals with Open AI, such as Germany's Axel Springer and the Associated Press.

Microsoft, the world's second-largest company by market capitalization, is a major investor in OpenAI and has been rapidly integrating the power of AI into its products since launching ChatGPT last year. The AI ​​models powering Microsoft's ChatGPT and Copilot (formerly Bing) have been trained for years on the content available on the Internet, assuming it's fair to use without compensation.

But the lawsuit alleged that the illegal use of copyrighted work from the Times to create artificial intelligence products threatens the Times' ability to provide quality journalism. "These tools rely and will continue to rely on independent journalism and available content as we and our colleagues report, edit and fact-check at great cost and with significant expertise," a Times spokesman said.

The Times said it contacted Microsoft and OpenAI in April to raise concerns about the use of intellectual property and resolved the issues. During the negotiations, the paper said it would work to ensure "fair value" for the use of its content, "maintain a healthy news ecosystem and help develop GenAI technology in a responsible way that benefits society." "A functioning ecosystem". informed the public."

"These negotiations have not led to a solution," the court said. The lawsuit alleges that the content created by ChatGPT and Copilot is very similar to the style of the New York Times and that the newspaper's content is superior to the improved chatbot technology.

They also revealed that the content, which turned out to be fake, was delivered to the New York Times by mistake. wave of lawsuits

The work joins a growing list of people and publishers trying to stop the AI ​​giant from using copyrighted material.

Last year, Game of Thrones author George RR Martin and other bestselling novelists filed a class-action lawsuit against OpenAI, accusing the launch of copyright infringement in ChatGPT. Last June, more than 4,000 writers signed a letter to the CEOs of OpenAI, Google, Microsoft, Meta, and other AI developers, denouncing the exploitative practice of creating chatbots that "mimic and reproduce" language, style, and ideas.

Universal and other music publishers have sued artificial intelligence company Anthropic in US courts over using copyrighted lyrics to train AI systems and get answers to users' questions. American photo distributor Getty Images has accused Stability AI of using its and its partners' photos to create a visual AI that generates original images based on simple requests.

As lawsuits pile up, Microsoft and Google have announced they will offer legal protection to consumers accused of copyright infringement for AI-generated content. EU politicians agreed this month to landmark legislation to regulate AI. The bill requires tech companies doing business in the EU to disclose data used to train AI systems and test products, particularly in risky applications such as self-driving cars. . - Driving and health care.

In October, US President Joe Biden issued an executive order addressing the impact of artificial intelligence on national security and discrimination, while China introduced regulations requiring artificial intelligence to reflect "core socialist values".