VP Resigns from UK’s Top Generative AI Firm Amid Controversy Over Copyrighted Content Use
An executive at Stability AI, one of the leading generative AI companies in the UK, has resigned from his position due to the company’s controversial use of copyrighted content. Ed Newton-Rex, the VP of audio, announced his resignation on Wednesday, stating that he disagrees with Stability AI’s belief that training generative AI models on copyrighted works falls under “fair use”.
Legal Battle for Generative AI
The argument of “fair use” has become a central point in a legal battle surrounding generative AI. Several companies in the sector have faced lawsuits for using copyrighted material without permission from the creators. Stability AI, in response to these legal challenges, has claimed that their use of copyrighted content is fair because it is transformative and socially beneficial. They argue that training AI on copyrighted material should be allowed without seeking permission or making payments.
A Moral Dilemma
Newton-Rex, who is also a composer, not only has legal concerns but also moral objections to the practice. He criticizes the fact that billion-dollar companies are using creators’ works without permission to train generative AI models, which can then produce content that competes with the original works. He believes that this exploitation of creators is unacceptable in a society where copyright plays a vital role in supporting the creative arts.
A Call for Change
While Newton-Rex still supports the potential of generative AI, he emphasizes the need for fair treatment of artists. He hopes that others within the generative AI industry will also speak out against the claim of “fair use” and urge companies to find alternative solutions that respect creators’ rights. TNW has reached out to Stability AI and Newton-Rex for further comments on the matter.