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Artificial Intelligence: ChatGPT and Beyond: AI: Copyright

Who holds the copyright?

If you create something using an AI such as ChatGPT, who holds the copyright? 

Check Terms of Use for the AI you use for some guidance.

OpenAI Terms of Use  include the statement that "you may not represent that out put from services was human-generated when it was not."  See also Content co-authored with the OpenAI API. 

Another example: See Bing chatbot's  Terms of Use for their statement on Ownership of Content, etc. The U. S. Copyright Office put out a paper in the Federal Register (2023, March 16) stating that only works created by humans can be registered for copyright.   How much human intervention is necessary if AI is used to help generate a work?  That will probably be worked out via court cases over time!   See more below!

Kris Kashtanova and Zayra of the Dawn

Kris Kashtanova  and her comic Zarya of the Dawn composed using the AI tool Midjourney. The U. S. Copyright Office did not grant her copyright for the images. See  Wikipedia article with an overview of copyright dispute and the articles below.

Hoffelder, N. (2022, December 26). "The US Copyright Office accepts and then challenged the copyright registration for a comic book which uses AI-generated art. (I think they erred – if the comic book has text written by a human, and was laid out by a human, then it is as copyrightable as any novel which uses publics domain or other works which can’t be copyrighted.)"  [This post leads to a short news story and quick video about this comic book and copyright.]

U. S. Copyright Office.  (2023, February 2). Zarya of the Dawn Letter. (PDF)

Lindberg, Van (2023, February 21).  Letter to the U. S. Copyright Office supporting Kristina Kashtanova's claim to authorship - and copyright - of Zarya of the Dawn - a comic book created using AI generated content.

Hals, T, & Brittain, B. (2023, April 1).  Humans vs machines: The fight to copyright AI art. Reuters (Scroll down for information on Kris Kashtanova and her aim to get her work creating images with Midjourney copyrighted by the U. S. Copyright Office.)

Artist tests limits of 'human authorship' of AI art as battle continues over who holds copyright. (2023, April 2).  NBC News

A.I Copyright  101. Kris Kashtanova and her lawyer  Heather Whitney. April 21, 2023. YouTube video  


Fair Use? What about texts and images used for AI tools?

AI and Copyright

Anderson, K. (2023, January 13).  ChatGPT says it's not an author.  The Geyser. [If AI is not an author, it can't hold copyright, right?]


Chen, M.  (2023, January 12). A scientist has filed suit against the U. S. Copyright Office, arguing his A.I.-generated art should be granted protections.  (Stephen Thaler is continuing to make the case that he should be granted copyright.)  


Ellison, S. (2022, August 29).  Who owns DALL-E images?  Findlaw.


Kinsella, E. (2022, February 23).  Can A.I.-generated art receive copyright protection?  U. S. authorities say no, citing a lack of ‘human authorship.’  Artnet.


McKendrick, J. (2022, December 12 ). Who ultimately owns content generated by ChatGPT and other AI platforms?  Forbes.  [Annoying pop-ups!  One of the points at the end of this article:  If generated text is used, should ChatGPT be cited?  An intellectual property lawyer Michael Kelber says yes, it would be appropriate to cite ChatGPT as a source.]


Murphy, B. P. (2022, December).  No, the Lensa AI app technically isn't stealing artists' work - but it will majorly shake up the art world.  The Conversation.


Moody, G. (2022, December 22).  The copyright industry is about to discover that there are hundreds of thousands of songs generated by AI already available, already popular.  TechDirt. 


Priori Legal.  (2022, December 14).  What does OpenAI’s ChatGPT think about copyright?  Priori.  [Read what the AI thinks about copyright and AI] 


Stokel-Walker, C. (2023, January 18). ChatGPT listed as author on research papers: Many scientists disapprove. Nature. [Some of the objections:  AI doesn't have the capability of taking responsibility for published work - and "cannot consent  to the terms of use and the right to distribute content" for publication. ]


Who holds the copyright?