Sarah Silverman sues Meta and OpenAI, alleging copyright infringement – Miscellaneous

No joke: Comedian and author Sarah Silverman is one of the lead plaintiffs in a pair of lawsuits against Meta and OpenAI accusing the tech companies of illegally using copyrighted works to train their AI systems.

Books cited in the lawsuits include Silverman’s 2010 bestselling memoir “The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee.” The federal lawsuits, filed Friday, July 7, allege that OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Meta LLaMA inserted text from “The Bedwetter” and other works to train their own large language models (LLMs) — without the consent (or compensation) of authors like Silverman.

Meta and OpenAI representatives did not respond diverseComment requests.

Silverman is one of three authors named as plaintiffs, along with novelist Christopher Golden (whose books include “Ararat”) and Richard Cadre, author of the Sandman Slim supernatural black series. The lawsuit — filed in the US District Court for the Northern District of California, Division of San Francisco — is seeking class action status and unspecified monetary damages. A copy of the lawsuit against Meta is at this link The lawsuit against OpenAI in this link. Attorneys representing the three authors, Joseph Savery and Matthew Patrick, filed a similar lawsuit last month against OpenAI on behalf of authors Paul Tremblay and Mona Awad.

OpenAI introduced ChatGPT in November 2022. San Francisco-based OpenAI is a private research lab that develops AI technologies, founded in 2015 as a non-profit organization by Elon Musk (who is no longer on OpenAI’s board of directors) and CEO Sam Altman.

While OpenAI has not specified what is included in its datasets for ChatGPT, the lawsuit against the company alleged that the only “internet-based book collection” that included the volume of material OpenAI was believed to be using were “flagrantly illegal shadow libraries” (which allegedly contained the plaintiffs’ copyrighted work). The complaint alleged that when ChatGPT was asked to “summarize books written by each of the plaintiffs, it produced highly accurate summaries … which means that ChatGPT retains knowledge of certain works in the training dataset and is able to output similar textual content.” At no time did ChatGPT reintroduce production of any of the Plaintiffs’ copyright management information included in their published work.”

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In their lawsuit against Meta, plaintiffs’ attorneys alleged that to train LLaMA (Large Language Meta AI Large Model) language models, the company transcribed a massive book dataset that included the work of the three aforementioned authors.

Silverman is a two-time Emmy winning comedian, actor, writer and producer. In the spring of 2022, the off-Broadway musical “The Bedwetter” sold out with the Atlantic Theater Company, and she currently hosts “The Sarah Silverman Podcast” and will host “Stupid Pet Tricks” on the TBS spin-off of David Letterman’s popular late-night segment.

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