Art that Imitates Art: Computational Creativity and Creative Contracting

Com­pu­ta­tion­al creativity—a sub­do­main of arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence con­cerned with sys­tems that rep­lic­ate or assist human cre­at­ive endeavors—has been the sub­ject of aca­dem­ic inquiry for dec­ades. Now, with recent improve­ments in machine learn­ing tech­niques and the rising pop­ular­ity of all things AI, com­pu­ta­tion­al cre­ativ­ity is a medi­um for crit­ic­ally and com­mer­cially suc­cess­ful works of art. From a 2016 Rem­brandt to Jukedeck’s instant music (or muzak?), AI-assisted and AI-driv­en works are a real­ity. This raises mind-bend­ing ques­tions about the nature of cre­ativ­ity, the rela­tion­ship between the artist and the view­er, even the exist­ence of free will. For many law­yers, it also raises a more imme­di­ate ques­tion: who owns all of this art?
Cyber­law Clini­cians Jess Fjeld and Mason Kortz dis­cuss copy­right in AI-gen­er­ated works, the need for a shared under­stand­ing of what is and isn’t up for grabs in a license, and how for­ward-think­ing con­tracts can pre­vent AI developers and artists from hav­ing their rights decided by our (often notori­ously back­wards-look­ing) leg­al sys­tem.

A Legal Anatomy of AI-generated Art: Part I

By Jes­sica Fjeld and Mason Kortz
21 Novem­ber 21, 2017

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