AI in Media: Rising Calls for Regulation to Safeguard Trust and Intellectual Property

JJohn August 9, 2023 4:43 PM

Major media organizations, including Gannett and The Associated Press, are urging policymakers to impose regulations on artificial intelligence models. They argue that unregulated AI could further erode public trust in media and damage the industry, especially in terms of intellectual property rights.

Media organizations call for AI regulation

Prominent organizations within the media industry, such as USA TODAY's parent company Gannett and The Associated Press, have issued a public call for regulation on artificial intelligence models. They've voiced their concerns about the potential loss of intellectual property rights due to generative AI models, which are often trained with proprietary content. The lack of a legal framework, they argue, could negatively impact the industry and erode public trust in the media.

Violation of copyright law by AI models

In the open letter, the organizations point out that AI models are frequently trained using content lifted directly from publishers, often without any form of permission, compensation, or credit for the original creators. This practice, they argue, is a clear violation of copyright law. Furthermore, such actions could severely undermine the core business models of the media industry and reduce the public’s access to reliable information.

Demand for transparency and consent in AI training

These media organizations are advocating for greater transparency in how AI models are trained. They are also demanding that AI models obtain explicit consent from the original creators before their intellectual property is used for training purposes. They believe media companies should have the right to negotiate collectively the access and use of their content with AI companies.

Tackling AI misinformation and bias

The organizations also stipulate that AI companies should take active steps to limit the spread of misinformation and bias within their models. They believe it's essential for AI models and their users to clearly, specifically, and consistently identify their work as AI-generated. This, they contend, will help uphold trustworthiness and accuracy within the media sphere.

The application of AI within the media industry is a controversial topic. Some organizations, like Getty Images, have taken legal action against AI companies for unauthorized use of their content, while others, like The Associated Press, have partnered with AI companies to utilize their technologies. Regardless, there remains a widespread concern about AI's potential to generate misinformation or biased content, which could lead to further erosion of public trust.

The role of AI in the media industry is still evolving. Some outlets, like CNET and Gizmodo, have already started using AI for content creation. However, there is a fear that the advancement of AI could impact industry traffic numbers by providing direct answers via chatbots instead of directing users to a list of links. Concerns also extend to job security, with fears that AI tools could replace certain roles within the industry.

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