Microsoft Draws Parallel Between NYT’s Allegations on OpenAI and Hollywood’s VCR Resistance

Microsoft has challenged The New York Times’ assertions in its lawsuit against OpenAI, accusing the publisher of making “unsubstantiated” claims that could impact the trajectory of generative artificial intelligence.

In a recent motion to dismiss part of the suit, Microsoft argued that the Times presented a misleading narrative of “doomsday futurology,” suggesting that OpenAI’s ChatGPT chatbot would devastate the news industry. Drawing a comparison to Hollywood’s resistance to the VCR in the 1970s, Microsoft’s legal team highlighted the Times’ attempt to challenge the advancement represented by the Large Language Model.

Open AI
OpenAI secures deals with Axel Springer and negotiates with CNN, Fox Corp., and Time for content licenses. (Credits: Unsplash)

As OpenAI’s primary investor, with approximately $13 billion invested in the startup, Microsoft underscored the significance of the case, framing it as a pivotal moment in the ongoing conflict between technology and media. The lawsuit revolves around allegations of copyright infringement and misuse of intellectual property by OpenAI and Microsoft in training LLMs with content from the Times.

Open AI had previously sought to dismiss parts of the Times’ lawsuit, alleging that the publisher had resorted to unethical means, including hiring someone to manipulate OpenAI’s products like ChatGPT to fabricate instances of copyright infringement. Microsoft’s latest filing rebuts this claim, asserting that the content used to train LLMs serves to enhance language comprehension rather than supplanting the market for original works.

Since its public release in late 2022, ChatGPT has propelled OpenAI to the forefront of the tech industry, with a reported valuation exceeding $80 billion.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman
OpenAI CEO surprised by NYT lawsuit, states models don’t require publisher’s data.

OpenAI has recently admitted that training top AI models without access to copyrighted materials is “impossible,” citing the broad scope of copyright law that covers various forms of human expression, from blog posts to government documents. This acknowledgment came in response to an inquiry from the U.K. House of Lords, as stated in a filing submitted by OpenAI last month in the U.K.

However, as recently as January, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman expressed surprise at The New York Times’ lawsuit, asserting that their models did not rely on the publisher’s data for training. Altman made these remarks during an event organized by Bloomberg in Davos, Switzerland, emphasizing that the inclusion of any specific training source did not significantly impact their models.

Despite this stance, OpenAI has pursued agreements with media entities like Axel Springer, the owner of Business Insider and Morning Brew, and is reportedly negotiating with CNN, Fox Corp., and Time to obtain licenses for their content.

Sajda Parveen
Sajda Parveen
Sajda Praveen is a market expert. She has over 6 years of experience in the field and she shares her expertise with readers. You can reach out to her at [email protected]
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