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20 Jul, 2023
1 min time to read

In an open letter published by the Authors Guild, the authors expressed concerns over the unauthorized use of their copyrighted books, articles, essays, and poetry to train AI systems.

The letter, addressed to prominent CEOs including Sam Altman of OpenAI, Sundar Pichai of Alphabet, Mark Zuckerberg of Meta, Emad Mostaque of Stability AI, Arvind Krishna of IBM, and Satya Nadella of Microsoft, called attention to the potential damage that generative AI systems could cause to the writing profession.

The authors argued that by incorporating their writings into AI systems, the market could be flooded with mediocre machine-generated content, posing a threat to their livelihoods.

The Authors Guild, which conducted a survey of over 5,700 participants, revealed that authors have experienced a significant decline in earnings, with a 40% drop in the past decade. The median income for full-time writers in 2022 was reported to be a mere $23,330.

The authors believe that the introduction of artificial intelligence technology will further worsen the problems writers face in earning a steady income.

More than 8,000 authors have signed the letter, including notable figures such as Dan Brown, author of "The Da Vinci Code," and Suzanne Collins, writer of "The Hunger Games." Their collective demand is for AI companies to provide compensation for both past and future use of their writings, in an effort to mitigate the damage caused to their profession.

The issue of permission and legality surrounding the use of copyrighted material in AI training remains uncertain. AI systems rely on large volumes of data, including text scraped from the internet, but the extent to which companies have obtained proper permissions for this data remains unclear.