AI and Intellectual Property: What Lawyers Say

Applications of AI

In a talk titled “AI or Humans: Who Owns Intellectual Property Rights?”, Michael Messinger and Iona Kaiser, partners at the international law firm Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease, spoke about the expanding role that large-scale language models play in creative endeavors.

“Six years ago, [U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s] “It's kind of surprising that we have AI inventors among the patent owners of inventors on all kinds of technologies, whether it's fabrics, beds, plants, circuits,” Messinger said. “It's a leading indicator of where the field is heading.”

But managing AI, copyright and intellectual property (IP) is more about an organisation's talent management policies than it is about the growth of technology, experts say.

Authorship decision

When it comes to content-generation copyright, the lawyers say they've noticed that when generating images through an AI platform, the end user is often a human. If you simply enter prompts into the AI ​​and ask it to create something, that person is not the creative person behind the product. It's important to note that AI by itself cannot register copyright, the lawyers say.

“There's no intellectual property because there's probably no copyright and no inventor, which means the company doesn't own the intellectual property that comes out of the process,” Messinger said.

He added that companies still need to ensure they have the proper licensing for those AI tools and check indemnification arrangements in case the output causes any problems.

Intellectual property rights arise when individuals use AI tools to add to existing inventions, quality control, and manufacturing processes, and use machine learning to improve the output of processes, structures.

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