Monday 26 June 2023

Copyright maximalism

Ages ago, I met an odd sort of copyright maximalist. The guy figured that ideas themselves should be treated as intellectual property, not just their expression. 

One minor problem with his theory is that he couldn't fully explain it without transferring valuable IP and he wanted compensation. I wasn't that interested. 

This push from Copyright Licensing NZ has a similar feel. Just read this and imagine that it has nothing to do with AI. It's kids learning about reading and writing from books, maturing, incorporating ideas into their own framework for understanding the world, and then writing their own ideas based on all of that. It's the same thing. 

New Zealand needs to urgently regulate generative AI tools so they comply with copyright laws, otherwise thousands of Kiwis will remain unrecognised and uncompensated for their intellectual property, Copyright Licensing NZ says.

The call comes amid global scrutiny and surging use of AI tools in homes, schools and in the workforce, with rising fears of a takeover as thousands of jobs are lost to the technology worldwide.

In the United States, the Writers’ Guild of America is currently striking in part to request the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers ban the use of AI for writing and rewriting any source material, and that no AI material be trained on guild members’ work.

With the alliance rejecting the offer, Kiwi scriptwriters are keeping a close eye on the situation.

... Sam Irvine, chief executive of Copyright Licensing, said it was “absolutely concerned” about AI, and particularly large language models, using the work of Kiwi authors, visual artists, writers and publishers without credit in the production of things like text or digitally made artwork.

AI models illegally sourcing content from the internet or other sources needed to be regulated so IP holders were attributed or compensated where necessary, Irvine said.

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