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Tensions Between Music Labels And Generative AI Reach US Courts

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Tensions Between Music Labels And Generative AI Reach US Courts

Artists and music production companies take generative AI to US Court

New Delhi:

Some of the world’s biggest music production companies, including Sony Music Entertainment, are suing two US-based artificial intelligence (AI) platforms Suno and Udio that generate songs based on text prompts, news agency Associated Press reported.

The lawsuit was announced by the Recording Industry Association of America on Tuesday, stating Universal Group Recordings and Warner Records are also plaintiffs in the lawsuit. The case against Suno AI has been filed in Boston federal court, and of Udio AI in New York.

The case seeks damages of $150,000 per song infringement, alleging some popular songs like Mariah Carey’s Christmas classic “All I Want for Christmas Is You” have been replicated by the AI music generators.

Suno AI came under the limelight in December last year when Microsoft partnered with it, integrating it inside Microsoft’s own chatbot Copilot.

Udio AI was launched in April this year and is known for its ability to realistically emote lyrics. Both Suno and Udio’s free versions offer basic features, with paid subscription unlocking advanced features, including increased number of songs generated in a day.

Music artists have expressed apprehensions over AI-generated music. Over 200 artists from across genres, including Billie Elish, Nikki Minaj and Zayn Malik, signed an open letter on 1 April, asking developers, tech companies and music platforms “to cease the use of AI to infringe upon and devalue the rights of human artists.” The letter expressed concern of AI-generated content flooding platforms and diluting royalty pools.

According to the Financial Times, Sony Music in May sent warning letters to 700 AI developers and music streaming platforms, asking them to not use data owned by Sony for training, developing or commercialising AI systems.

In India, AR Rehman has embraced the use of AI to produce music, using it to recreate the voice of late singers Bamba Bakya and Shahul Hameed in the song ‘Thimiri Yezhuda’ that released on January 26 for the movie ‘Lal Salaam’. The Oscar winning singer and composer took to X (formerly Twitter) at the time to clarify that technology can be used to enhance the musical experience ethically.

Indian Music Industry, a non-commercial body representing the interests of the likes of Sony Music (India), Saregama India Ltd, Tips, and T-Series, acknowledged the potential of AI in assisting music production, publishing a position paper authored by its president, in October last year. However, the paper advocated for a human-centric AI that respects India’s rich musical traditions and safeguards creativity.





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