UK Government should deal definitively with copyright issues on LLM/GenAI training data whilst adopting a positive vision for LLMs to ensure UK does not miss “AI goldrush” – recommends House of Lords Committee

The House of Lords Communications and Digital Committee issued its report  "Large language models and generative AI" today (2 February 2024). The Committee concluded that the "goldrush" opportunity that AI presents requires the UK Government to adopt a more positive vision for LLM's in order "to reap the social and economic benefits, and enable the UK to compete globally". The report sets out 10 core recommendations "to steer the UK toward a positive outcome" including measures that might resolve copyright disputes of training data. Here we look at the copyright recommendations specifically. Read more

Latest news on planned AI regulation under the EU AI Act and on AI litigation in the EU, UK, US and China

We look at the latest legislative developments in the EU and cases in the UK, US and China shedding light on how issues around the use of AI will be addressed by the use of intellectual property and what questions still remain open to debate. In particular we look at The EU AI Act and the protection of copyright in materials used in machine learning; the UK and US proceedings in Getty v Stability AI on the infringement of rights associated with images used to train Stability's Stable Diffusion image-generating AI; New York Times v. OpenAI and Microsoft case in the US that revolves around fair use of copyright materials; as well as Li v Liu in China in relation to copyright in AI generated images. Read more

Copyright, Mickey Mouse and what it means to be within the public domain

In the IP world, 2024 started with headlines that Disney's Mickey Mouse (or at least a version of him) is now in the public domain.  Two horror films and a video game about Disney's famous icon were announced just days into the New Year.  But what does it mean to say that a character has entered the public domain?  And what can people do with Mickey that they could not do before? Read more

Innovation, IP and the energy transition – Creative tensions

The scale of the change needed to tackle climate change is enormous and it is clear the global transformation to a low carbon economy will be underpinned by technological innovation. Incredibly, according to the International Energy Agency’s Net Zero by 2050 report, almost half of emission reductions required by 2050 will come from technologies currently at the demonstration or prototype stage. So, attracting investment and increasing the speed with which this technology can come to market is critical. Read more

Damages of at least US$1.6 million awarded by the US District Court in the ‘Bored Ape Yacht Club’ litigation

In May 2023 we reported on the IP infringement decision of the Californian District Court, in relation to the dispute between the creators of the Bored Aped Yacht Club (BAYC) non-fungible token (NFT) collection, Yuga Labs, and the 'artists' Ryder Ripps and Jeremy Cahen.  In that decision, the Court found against the defendants and, on 25 October 2023, the order for damages was handed down.  This blog post looks at the recent damages decisions and its implications.  (For a refresher on NFTs, you can consult our series here.) As background, the defendants created an NFT collection called the Ryder Ripps BAYC (RR BAYC) collection, which essentially copied the iconic ape images from the Yuga Labs' BAYC collection.  The defendants' alleged that this was for the purposes of commentary on Yuga Labs and the BAYC NFTs.  The Court found against the defendants on the claims of false designation of origin and cyber-squatting (in relation to certain domain names used by the defendants).  It also dismissed the defendants' First Amendment / Rogers defence because no artistic expression was at issue, finding that "As Yuga has pointed out, and the Court agrees, Defendants’ sale of RR/BAYC NFTs is no more artistic than the sale of a counterfeit handbag". Read more

Series: The IP in AI

Uses of machine learning and AI are expanding rapidly, and IP rights play a critical role in both regulating the use of AI and protecting the rights of inventors and creators. In this series, we will explore the key challenges governments worldwide are currently grappling with in order to provide the right level of protection … Read more

UK Select Committee recommends legislation on AI including to establish and enforce rights of IP owners

The UK Science, Innovation and Technology Select Committee (which recently conducted an inquiry into the impact of AI on several sectors) has published The Governance of Artificial Intelligence: Interim Report identifying 12 challenges of AI, including that for intellectual property, and recommends legislation during this parliament. The report also expresses concerns that the UK will fall behind if there are delays, given the moves made by the EU and US to regulate AI already. On IP it recommends that where AI models and tools make use of other people’s content, policy must establish the rights of the originators of this content, and these rights must be enforced. Read more

The requirement for fixation in copyright – Self-proclaimed Bitcoin inventor succeeds in establishing serious issues to be tried on appeal

Dr Craig Wright claims to be the inventor of Bitcoin and is asserting three Bitcoin-related copyright claims against a number of entities. In the appeal from the decision of Meade J that there was no serious issue to be tried on the merits of the claim in relation to copyright in the Bitcoin File Format (required in order for permission to be granted to service defendants outside the jurisdiction), Lord Justice Arnold and the Court of Appeal unanimously held that there was a serious issue to be tried, allowing the appeal and in the process elucidating the requirement for fixation in copyright claims. Read more