AI Art Tools Stable Diffusion and Midjourney Targeted in Copyright Lawsuit

The lawsuit is being led by lawyer and typographer Matthew Butterick and the Joseph Saveri Law Firm, which specializes in antitrust and class action cases. Butterick and Saveri are also currently suing Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI in a similar case involving the AI programming model CoPilot, which is trained on lines of code collected from the web.

In a blog post announcing the suit, Butterick describes the case as “another step toward making AI fair & ethical for everyone.” He goes on to say that the capacity of AI art tools like Stable Diffusion to “flood the market with an essentially unlimited number of infringing images will inflict permanent damage on the market for art and artists.”

As AI art tools have gained popularity over the past year, the art community has been divided on their use. While some argue that these tools can be helpful, similar to past generations of software like Photoshop and Illustrators, many more object to the use of their work to train these money-making systems. Generative AI art models are trained on billions of images collected from the web, generally without the creators’ knowledge or consent. As a result, AI art generators can be used to create artwork that replicates the style of specific artists.

The lawsuit is a significant development in the ongoing debate about the use of AI in the art world. It highlights the need for clear guidelines and regulations to ensure that AI art tools are being used ethically and in compliance with copyright law. As the use of AI in the art world continues to grow, it will be important to find a balance between the benefits of these tools and the rights of artists to control the use of their work.

The claim by the artists that these organizations have infringed the rights of “millions of artists” by training their AI tools on five billion images scraped from the web without the consent of the original artists, is a serious one that needs to be addressed and resolved.

The use of AI art tools is a growing trend in the industry, and it’s essential that artists rights are protected and that creators of these tools are in compliance with copyright laws. The lawsuit is a significant step towards making AI fair and ethical for everyone, and it’s important that the industry as a whole takes notice and works to establish guidelines and regulations that protect the rights of artists while still allowing for the growth and innovation in the AI art world.

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