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Authors sue OpenAI and Microsoft over ChatGPT, alleging copyright infringement

The suit, led by author Julian Sancton, alleges that the companies profited off the authors' works without receiving their permission.

Published: November 22, 2023 9:00pm

Microsoft and OpenAI face a lawsuit from a coalition of nonfiction authors who have alleged that companies trained ChatGPT to copy their works.

ChatGPT is an AI chatbot through which users may replicate human conversation via text input, generate lengthy compositions, or merely ask questions. The suit, led by author Julian Sancton, alleges that the companies profited off the authors' works without receiving their permission.

"Defendants have made commercial reproductions of millions, maybe billions, of copyrighted works without any compensation to authors, without a license, and without permission. In doing so, they have infringed on the exclusive rights of Plaintiff Sancton and other writers and rightsholders whose work has been copied and appropriated to train their artificial intelligence models," the suit claimed, according to The Hill. 

The plaintiffs filed the suit in the Manhattan Federal Court and are seeking an unspecified amount in damages.

The copyright suit comes amid a leadership struggle at OpenAI, which saw the board oust CEO Sam Altman last week, only to announce his return after hundreds of the company's employees threatened to resign if he did not return. OpenAI subsequently announced a new board, including former Salesforce co-CEO Bret Taylor, former U.S. Treasury Secretary Larry Summers and original board member Adam D'Angelo.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter.

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