RIAA, Major Labels File Lawsuits Against Developers of AI Music Services

Artificial intelligence has been a hot-button topic in the world of art and music since it became widely available. More recently, AI engines like Suno and Udio have started to let users generate songs. However, major record labels and the Recording Industry Association of America say that these developers are using copyrighted recordings to “train” the AI and to generate music. As a result, the RIAA and several major labels have come together to file lawsuits against AI developers.

Videos by American Songwriter

Today, the RIAA announced the filing of a pair of copyright infringement lawsuits against AI music services Udio and Suno. The suits are based on “the mass infringement of copyrighted sound recordings copied and exploited without permission by two multi-million-dollar music generation services,” according to the RIAA.

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Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, and Warner Records are among the plaintiffs in the suits against Suno Inc., developers of Suno AI and Uncharted Labs, developers of Udio AI. Plaintiffs filed the former suit in the District Court for the District of Massachusetts and the latter in the District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Claims Made in Lawsuits Against AI Developers

Variety shared some of the key complaints of the lawsuits against AI developers. For instance, the suits state,  “There is nothing that exempts AI technology from copyright law or that excuses AI companies from playing by the rules. These lawsuits seek to enforce these basic principles.”

The suits also state that AI has the potential to be an important tool in the creation of music if it is developed with the participation and permission of copyright holders. However, if it is “developed irresponsibly without regard for fundamental copyright protections, those same tools threaten enduring and irreparable harm to recording artists, record labels, and the music industry, inevitably reducing the quality of new music available the consumers and diminishing our shared culture.”

The lawsuits against AI developers seek three things. First, a declaration that the two services infringed plaintiffs’ copyrighted sound recordings. Second, injunctions barring the services from further infringing on plaintiffs’ copyrighted works in the future. Third, damages for the infringements that have already occurred.

Statements from the RIAA

RIAA chairman and CEO Mitch Glazier spoke about the AI lawsuits in the announcement. “The music community has embraced AI and we are already partnering and collaborating with responsible developers to build sustainable AI tools centered on human creativity that put artists and songwriters in charge,” he said. “We can only succeed if developers are willing to work together with us. Unlicensed services like Suno and Udio that claim it’s ‘fair’ to copy an artist’s life’s work and exploit it for their own profit without consent or pay set back the promise of genuinely innovative AI for us all,” he added.

Featured Image by Recording Industry Association of America

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