Safeguarding Copyright in the Age of AI: Organisations Unite in Urgent Appeal

As the AI Act approaches a critical vote by member states on 2nd February 2024, 71 organisations spanning various cultural industries have penned a collective appeal to Mr Gabriel Attal, the Prime Minister of France. The appeal, driven by concerns over potential attempts to dilute copyright protections for European AI operators, emphasises the need for a balanced approach that respects copyright while fostering innovation.

The negotiators’ agreement, reached during the Trilogue on the draft “Artificial Intelligence” Regulation on 6th December 2023, strikes a delicate balance between copyright respect and the growth of innovative AI companies. However, recent remarks and perceived positions within the French government have sparked fears of a minority bloc forming against the agreement, potentially undermining copyright safeguards.

The appeal highlights two critical obligations for general-purpose/open-source AI systems. The first involves the development of a policy respecting copyright, while the second focuses on providing a “sufficiently detailed summary” of training data, crucial for exercising the right of opposition by rights holders. The appeal expresses serious concerns about potential weaknesses in the principles and protections for copyright, urging clear commitment and unambiguous support from French authorities to ensure the continued enhancement of copyright and related rights.

Read the full letter here