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Sony Music Group warns over 700 companies against using its content to train AI

One of the world’s largest record labels has issued notices warning hundreds of companies not to train artificial intelligence models on its content without permission.

Sony Music Group – which owns such well-known labels as Columbia Records, RCA Records and Epic Records – has started sending official letters to more than 700 generative AI companies and streaming platforms banning them from extracting text or data , web scraping or otherwise using any means. SMG content without explicit license agreements.

This covers a wide variety of content, including audio recordings, musical compositions (including lyrics), cover art and metadata, according to a copy of the letter obtained by NBC News.

In its letter, SMG said it recognizes the “significant potential and advancements” in AI.

“However, unauthorized use of SMG Content in the training, development or commercialization of AI systems deprives SMG Companies and SMG Talent of control and appropriate compensation for uses of SMG Content, conflicts with the normal exploitation of these works, unreasonably prejudices our legitimate interests and infringes our intellectual property and other rights,” he wrote.

Such activity “conflicts with the normal exploitation of these works, unreasonably harms our legitimate interests, and infringes on our intellectual property and other rights,” the letter states.

Asked for comment, an SMG spokesperson referred NBC News to a statement the company posted online Thursday.

“Technological developments have often changed the course of the creative industries. AI will likely continue this long-standing trend,” he wrote in the post. “However, this innovation must ensure that the rights of songwriters and performers, including copyright, are respected.”

The letter asks companies to either confirm that they have not used SMG content without authorization, or, if they have, to provide details of how the content was used in AI training.

The European Union’s Artificial Intelligence Act, the world’s first comprehensive AI law, passed in March, includes a clause requiring providers of general-purpose AI models to make public a “sufficiently detailed” summary » content used to train these models.

Concerns about the use of AI have plagued the music industry in recent months, as the rapid proliferation of generative AI tools makes it easier than ever for anyone to scrape copyrighted content to produce AI-generated music.

With regulations protecting human labor still lagging in the United States, many companies have begun negotiating their own agreements regarding licensing their content for training AI models. Some have also sued AI companies, claiming their AI models were trained on copyrighted materials.

Some tracks that appear to use AI-generated vocals have already appeared online. Last year, a viral song called “Heart on my Sleeve,” created by an anonymous musician nicknamed “ghostwriter,” featured vocals that resemble those of Drake and The Weeknd. It was quickly removed from streaming services due to copyright infringement. claim by Universal Music Group.

(UMG has no relationship with NBCUniversal, the parent company of NBC News.)

In April, Drake released “Taylor Made Freestyle,” which featured the AI-generated vocals of the late rapper Tupac Shakur. The diss track was removed from Drake’s X and Instagram accounts days after Shakur’s estate threatened to sue him.

Warner Music Group CEO Robert Kyncl testified last month before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property to advocate for legislation that would protect against the use of non-consensual deepfakes.

“Our fundamental position on AI is simple. Everyone should have the right to decide how their own name, likeness and voice are used,” Kyncl said in prepared remarks. “These characteristics are the very foundations of our individuality – they are not simply data that others can take and use. Each person’s identity should not be used in a way that they would never tolerate or wish to participate in.

Artists are also calling for protections against AI. More than 200 artists signed an open letter last month calling on AI developers, tech companies and digital music services to pledge not to use AI in a way that “undermines or replaces talent human artistic of songwriters and artists.”

Gn entert
News Source : www.nbcnews.com

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