In what promises to be one of the first—of potentially many—major showdowns between AI tech companies and music rights holders, as well as and other copyright-protected arts, we’re watching in real-time as the world begins to define what AI is going to be allowed—and not allowed—to do.

With a focus on training and how AI models have trained their own models and algorithms on music and art created not by computers, we have news that the Recording Industry Association of America and record labels are suing AI music generators over copyright infringement claims.

Let’s look a bit at this ongoing debate and explore what it could mean for the future of not just music for video, but filmmaking and video more specifically as well.

Record Labels Suing AI Music Generators

Led by a group of music labels including Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, and Sony Music Group, this coalition has filed lawsuits in US federal court alleging copyright infringement on a massive scale—most notably by AI music generator companies Suno and Udio.

As we’ve seen with the rise of AI in all types of creative arts from graphics and video, music has been one of the many frontiers in which AI has promised to completely revolutionize. We’ve seen music-gen AI technology pop up over the past year which has promised the ability to get fully AI-generated tracks based on simple text prompts.

And, in theory, this does seem like the next logical step for the budding royalty-free music for the video world to embrace, as it does feel quite similar to the way in which AI image and video models work. However, as we’re quickly learning, the training materials are key here.

What the Future Holds

The lawsuit has just been filed so we’ll have to wait and see how this latest suit plays out, but it does look to be a pretty big step for such major labels to be making a statement about protecting their artists’ works.

It also is a bit of an offensive play, perhaps, to suss out more information about where these AI companies are getting their training materials from—which most companies have not shared much info about at all.

We’ll see what comes next, but for now, we can assume that these lawsuits are going to be coming more often as these conversations and debates continue on. It’s a bold new world, and there’s a lot of scrambling left to do for everyone to make sense of what this future is ultimately going to look like.