What's wrong with this picture? AI-created images and content: copyright ownership and infringement
Countless social media posts, images and articles have been generated using AI tools such as ChatGPT, Stable Diffusion and Dall-E. But who – if anyone – owns the copyright in the outputs, and do the tools themselves infringe copyright? Prompt-based AI tools raise two key questions under UK copyright law: (1) Are the outputs from AI tools protected by copyright at all and, if so, who owns those outputs? This determines whether a user can prevent others from copying their AI-created content. (2) Do the tools themselves infringe copyright in the underlying materials used to train the tools, and can the owners of copyright in those materials prevent the use and exploitation of (i) the AI tools themselves and (ii) the outputs of AI tools? In this article we take a deep dive into the issues and the recent infringement claims.