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Sony Music issues warnings to AI companies over unauthorised content use

Sony Music warns AI companies against unauthorised use of its content, highlighting the need for artist control and proper compensation.

Sony Music has taken a firm stance against the unauthorised use of its content by AI companies, sending out warning letters to hundreds of technology firms and streaming platforms. This move highlights the growing concerns within the music industry regarding the control and compensation of artists' work in the age of artificial intelligence.

The letters, which were sent to over 700 AI companies and streaming platforms, emphasise the importance of respecting copyright laws, especially in relation to the , development, or commercialisation of AI systems that utilise copyrighted material such as music, art, and lyrics. Sony Music, home to artists like Doja Cat, Billy Joel, Celine Dion, and Lil Nas X, has made it clear that any unauthorised use of their work could undermine the artists' control over their creations and their right to compensation.

Industry-wide impact

The music industry has been proactive in setting stringent rules for how its copyrighted works are used in conjunction with AI tools. This is evident from the actions taken on platforms like YouTube, where AI voice clones of musicians became popular last year. The industry secured a strict set of rules for music , contrasting with the much looser protections afforded to other types of content.

The issue of music rights and AI has also been prominent on TikTok. Earlier this year, a dispute over licensing agreements led Universal Music Group to temporarily remove its artists' music from TikTok, silencing viral videos featuring songs from notable artists like Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande. However, the music returned to the platform in April, coinciding with promotional activities for new album releases. By early May, the standoff concluded with an agreement that included more robust protections around AI usage and new e-commerce monetisation opportunities.

The future of AI and music rights

The dialogue between music labels and AI platforms is increasingly focusing on how AI development can respect and protect human artistry and the economics that support artists and songwriters. The challenge remains significant, as AI-generated voice clones that create new songs raise questions about the extent of control a person has over their voice. AI companies have been known to train models on extensive libraries of recordings, often without obtaining proper consent, allowing the public to generate new material using these models.

This ongoing issue underscores the complexity of copyright and rights of publicity within the music industry, complicated further by varying laws across different states in the US.

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Emma Job
Emma Job
Emma is a freelance news editor at Tech Edition. With a decade's experience in content writing, she revels in both crafting and immersing herself in narratives. From tracking down viral trends to delving into the most recent news stories, her goal is to deliver insightful and timely content to her readers.

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