Newly Introduced Bill Would Force Generative AI Companies to Disclose Copyrighted Source Material

newly introduced bill would force generative Ai companies to disclose copyrighted source material used to train models
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newly introduced bill would force generative Ai companies to disclose copyrighted source material used to train models
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Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore (Adam Schiff) / CC by 2.0

Newly introduced legislation would require generative AI companies to disclose copyrighted source material used to train their models.

California Representative Adam Schiff (pictured) introduced a new bill on Tuesday, April 9 that would require companies creating generative artificial intelligence platforms to publicly disclose all copyrighted source material used to train their models.

Called the Generative AI Copyright Disclosure Act, the legislation would require anyone creating training datasets or making significant changes to an existing dataset to submit a notice to the Register of Copyrights. That notice must contain a “detailed summary of any copyrighted works used” and the URL for any publicly available material. The Register of Copyrights would then publish a publicly available online database containing all the notices.

The bill would require the notice be filed no later than 30 days after the AI system is first available for public use, and would also retroactively apply to AI systems already publicly available. Those companies would also have 30 days to submit their notice.

“AI has the disruptive potential of changing our economy, our political system, and our day-to-day lives,” said Schiff in an official statement in which he described the proposed legislation as striking an appropriate balance between supporting technological advancements and respecting creativity. “We must balance the immense potential of AI with the crucial need for ethical guidelines and protections.”

“It champions innovation while safeguarding the rights and contributions of creators, ensuring they are aware when their work contributes to AI training datasets,” Schiff continued. “This is about respecting creativity in the age of AI and marrying technological progress with fairness. […] My Generative AI Copyright Disclosure Act is a pivotal step in this direction.”

The legislation comes during increasingly heightened concerns over the negative effects of AI on content creators and artists. Last week, over 200 artists, including Billie Eilish, Nicki Minaj, and the estate of Bob Marley, signed an open letter calling for AI developers, DSPs, and tech companies to stop using AI at the detriment of artists.

The letter calls out “some of the biggest and most powerful companies” for using artists’ work without their permission to train AI models and create AI-generated deepfakes that could “substantially dilute the royalty pools” paid to artists.