Tech giants say users of their software should be held responsible for AI copyright infringements

AI developers say it’s not their fault that their machine learning programs produce copyrighted material, even though they are the ones who trained their systems on copyrighted material. Instead, they want users to take legal responsibility for material generated by their systems.

The U.S. Copyright Office is mulling new regulations regarding generative AI and published a request for comment on artificial intelligence and copyright in August. The responses to the request are public and can be found here.

Among the responses, companies such as Google, Dall-E developer OpenAI and Microsoft wrote, arguing that only unlicensed production of copyrighted material violates existing protections. According to them, AI software is like audio or video recording equipment, photocopiers or cameras, all of which can be used to infringe copyrights. Manufacturers of those products are not held accountable when that happens, so why should AI companies be held responsible, the thinking goes.