France Proposes New AI Copyright Law, Raising Concerns on Innovation
France has recently put forward a law proposal aimed at addressing the use of copyright-protected content in generative AI technology. The proposed law, introduced by members of the French National Assembly from President E. Macron’s party, is designed to secure artificial intelligence through copyright regulations.
The proposal introduces four new obligations to the French Intellectual Property Code (IPC). One of the key provisions states that the integration and use of copyright-protected works within AI software systems require authorization from the author or intellectual property rights (IPR) holder. This means that AI providers would need to obtain prior authorization from the copyright holder before using any protected works during the training of their AI systems.
However, this proposal has been met with controversy as it appears to contradict Article L.111-1, paragraph 1 of the IPC. This article states that the author of a work enjoys exclusive intangible property rights over it by the sole fact of its creation. Granting copyright to works generated solely by artificial intelligence, without human intervention, goes against the humanist philosophy of French intellectual property.
The proposal also includes transparency obligations similar to those outlined in the EU AI Act. This means that the caption work created by AI and the name of the original work’s author would be mandatory when artificial works are created. Additionally, if an artificial work is generated from works of unidentified origin, a tax to enhance the value of creation would be imposed on the company operating the AI system responsible for creating the work. The specific tax rate would be determined by a decree.
The proposal will now undergo the standard legislative procedure and be discussed in the French Parliament. It remains to be seen whether it will be adopted. While the proposal does address the challenging issue of protecting intellectual property rights in an increasingly AI-driven world, it also raises concerns about potential negative effects on innovation and AI development in France.
Meanwhile, trilogue discussions on the EU AI Act are ongoing, with the text expected to be finalized and adopted by the end of 2023.
In conclusion, France’s proposed AI copyright law aims to regulate the use of copyright-protected content in AI systems. While it aims to secure intellectual property rights, it raises concerns about stifling innovation and development in the field of artificial intelligence. The proposal will undergo further consideration, while discussions on the EU AI Act continue. The outcome of these legislative efforts will shape the future of AI regulations and their impact on innovation.