A group of authors has reportedly filed a lawsuit against OpenAI, accusing the Microsoft-backed program of misusing their writing for training its popular artificial intelligence (AI)-powered chatbot, ChatGPT.
The authors claim that OpenAI copied their works without permission to teach the AI system how to respond to human text prompts, Reuters reported Monday (Sept. 11).
OpenAI did not immediately reply to PYMNTS’ request for comment.
This lawsuit is the latest in a series of proposed copyright-infringement class actions filed by authors against OpenAI and other companies involved in AI training, according to the report.
The newest lawsuit, filed in federal court in San Francisco, alleges that OpenAI included the authors’ works in ChatGPT’s training dataset without obtaining proper authorization, the report said. The authors argue that AI can accurately summarize their works and generate text that mimics their writing styles. They contend that their books, plays, and articles are particularly valuable for ChatGPT’s training as they represent high-quality, long-form writing.
This is not the first time OpenAI has faced legal action over copyright infringement, per the report. Several companies, including Microsoft, Meta Platforms, and Stability AI, have also been sued by copyright owners for using their work in AI training. OpenAI and other companies have defended their practices, asserting that AI training constitutes fair use of copyrighted material scraped from the internet.
In July, thousands of authors penned an open letter demanding AI firms get permission and pay writers to use their words to train AI models.
ChatGPT has gained significant popularity, becoming the fastest-growing consumer application in history earlier this year, with 100 million monthly active users in January, according to the report. The authors claim that their works played a crucial role in training ChatGPT, making their inclusion without permission all the more significant.
The authors’ lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of money damages and an order to block OpenAI’s alleged “unlawful and unfair business practices,” the report said.
Microsoft announced Thursday (Sept. 7) that it will provide some legal safeguards to customers using its AI. The tech giant’s newly launched Copilot Copyright Commitment is designed to protect AI customers worried about possible intellectual property (IP) infringement.