NWU Joint Action on AI Copyright Exceptions and Authors Guild AI/ML Open Letter

Last week, SFWA signed the “Creators Call for Action on Artificial Intelligence (AI) Copyright Exceptions,” a joint action from 24 creator-led organizations delivered to the European Union and United States governing bodies. This letter addresses the harm already caused to creators by AI companies’ manipulations of exceptions to copyright enacted by the 2019 European Union Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market. The details of this issue are well explained on the National Writers Union (NWU) website.

We felt it was important to sign onto this particular joint call for a number of reasons:

  • Working with other organizations to monitor and respond to developments both in generative AI and in the legal environment around it is essential to advocating for concrete protections and restitution for writers. 
  • Responding to the unique issues that AI presents to creative copyrights is a global effort, not one limited to Silicon Valley. It’s important to ensure that writers’ rights are respected around the world, so corporations who may try to relocate their operations rather than compensate creators fairly will have no place to go. 
  • This letter, written by the NWU, is one such global effort, and we encourage everyone to read the letter in full to better understand some of the important copyright issues regarding the use of AI/ML applications. You are welcome to distribute the joint call and spread the word. Access the PDF of the complete joint call for action here.  

We’d also like to encourage all authors to read and consider signing this open letter to AI/ML leaders from the Authors Guild. The letter, which was recently released, calls on AI companies to get permission from and compensate writers for the use of their works in the development and output of generative AI technologies. Over 8,000 authors have signed thus far.

SFWA members should refer to their email for information on volunteering for our new Emerging Technologies Committee and submitting links for our webpage that compiles SFWA members’ thoughts and writing on issues related to AI/ML applications.