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Challenges With AI: Artistry, Copyrights and Fake News

The world is buzzing about the new AI applications that are rapidly changing the landscape at home and work. But what about copyright protections, artistry and even fake news as our AI journey accelerates?  

The recent surge in interest in new AI applications in 2023 has been nothing short of extraordinary. From ChatGPT to a growing list of other new apps, our technology and business worlds are rapidly evolving before our eyes in many exciting ways.

As a curious technologist, I am fascinated by these new trends, and I wrote this primer on the topic back in January: “ChatGPT: Hopes, Dreams, Cheating and Cybersecurity.”

I have received many questions about the use of ChatGPT to generate content, and this YouTube video addressed the question: “Is It Plagiarism to Use ChatGPT in Your Published Works?”
But as an author, blogger and creator of original content, I have other concerns that are growing just as fast as the new technology is being deployed.

Is OpenAI and ChatGPT technology reliable and giving proper credit to my intellectual property — as well as the property of all authors, bloggers, artists and other content creators?

Consider these recent headlines:

Variety:AI and Copyright: Human Artistry Campaign Launches to Support Songwriters and Musicians’ Rights

“The fast rise of AI technology has opened up a world of brain-busting questions about copyright and creators’ rights — for example, if David Guetta drops a song with a ChatGPT-generated verse from a fake Eminem, who gets paid? — and it’s safe to say them music industry is alarmed by this universe of new challenges.

“A new coalition to meet those challenges called the Human Artistry Campaign was announced at the South by Southwest conference on Thursday, with support from more than 40 organizations, including the Recording Academy, the National Music Publishers' Association, the Recording Industry of America and many others.”

Billboard:U.S. Copyright Office AI Guidance Sparks More Questions Than Answers for Music

“Last week the USCO released guidance on the copyright-ability of works made using AI, saying that a work that is a combination of both AI generation and human creation can be eligible for copyright protection, with any purely AI made portions carved out. Essentially, it takes the position that copyright only extends to the portions of the work that are attributable to human authorship. …

“To address this, the policy caveat is that the copyrightability of any given work will depend on its specific circumstances and will need to be determined on a case-by-case basis. It’s worth noting copyright does not protect ideas, only expression, and these distinctions will no doubt be complex when addressed in practice. Specifically, it states,

“'This policy does not mean that technological tools cannot be part of the creative process. Authors have long used such tools to create their works or to recast, transform, or adapt their expressive authorship. For example, a visual artist who uses Adobe Photoshop to edit an image remains the author of the modified image, and a musical artist may use effects such as guitar pedals when creating a sound recording. In each case, what matters is the extent to which the human had creative control over the work’s expression and "actually formed" the traditional elements of authorship.'”

Popular Science:Adobe built its Firefly AI art generator to avoid bias and copyright issues

“Artificial intelligence systems that can generate images have been big news for the past year. OpenAI’s DALL-E 2 and Stable Diffusion have dominated the headlines, and Google, Meta, and Microsoft have all announced features they are working on. But one huge name has been conspicuously absent: Adobe. Today, with the announcement of Firefly, which is a family of generative AI models, that changes. …”


I have been using ChatGPT for a number of weeks now, and there is no doubt that the technology is amazing. For example, here are a few of my interactions with the tool:

Lohrmann: What is the book Virtual Integrity: Faithfully Navigating the Brave New Web about?

ChatGPT: Virtual Integrity: Faithfully Navigating the Brave New Web is a book written by Daniel Lohrmann and published in 2014. The book focuses on the topic of digital ethics and aims to help readers navigate the complex ethical issues that arise in the online world.

The author discusses a wide range of topics related to digital integrity, including cyber bullying, online privacy, social media and the impact of technology on relationships and society as a whole. The book also provides practical advice on how individuals and organizations can maintain their ethical standards while using digital technologies, and how to navigate the sometimes murky waters of the online world.

Overall, Virtual Integrity is a comprehensive guide to digital ethics that offers readers valuable insights and practical tools for navigating the challenges of the modern digital landscape.

(My comment: Not a bad response, except the book wasn't written in 2014.)

Lohrmann: Who wrote Cyber Mayday and the Day After: A Leader's Guide to Preparing, Managing and Recovering From Inevitable Business Disruptions?

ChaptGPT: The book Cyber Mayday and the Day After: A Leader's Guide to Preparing, Managing and Recovering From Inevitable Business Disruptions was written by Jeff Troy and published in 2019.

Jeff Troy is a former deputy assistant director of the FBI's Cyber Division and has extensive experience in cybersecurity and cyber crime investigations. In his book, Troy provides a comprehensive guide for leaders and decision-makers in organizations to prepare, manage and recover from cyber disruptions that may impact their business operations.

(My comment: Wrong author, wrong date, etc. I sent my feedback to the ChatGPT team and then re-ran the same question two weeks later. Below is the new response.)

ChaptGPT: The book Cyber Mayday and the Day After: A Leader's Guide to Preparing, Managing and Recovering From Inevitable Business Disruptions was written by Daniel J. Lohrmann and published in 2020.

Daniel J. Lohrmann is a cybersecurity expert, author and speaker who has worked in the field of cybersecurity for over three decades. He is currently the chief security officer (CSO) for Security Mentor, a security awareness training company. In addition to Cyber Mayday and the Day After, he has written several other books on cybersecurity, including Virtual Integrity: Faithfully Navigating the Brave New Web and The CISO Journey: Life Lessons and Concepts to Accelerate Your Professional Development.

(My comment: The response was different and closer, but still full of inaccuracies. I have not worked at Security Mentor for 18 months. My co-author Shamane Tan was not listed, and the book was published in November 2021. I also never wrote The CISO Journey. That book was written by Eugene Fredriksen.)

Key questions must be addressed around copyright law, and this article takes a stab at some of the answers.

“Since, according to Section 2(2) of the German Copyright Act, copyright is about works that are personal, intellectual creations of human beings, some problems arise from the use of artificial intelligence:
  • Unwarranted copyright infringement: AI-generated works can easily be considered the property of another person, which can lead to unwarranted, legal action for those who originally created them.
  • Confusion over copyright attribution: It is difficult to determine which person or organization has the right to publish and/or exhibit AI-generated content. This can lead to the emergence of litigation.
  • Impairment of creative freedom: AI works could discourage people from expressing their own creativity and developing new ideas because existing materials can be easily duplicated.
  • Lack of privacy standards: Since AI is based on personal or sensitive information, there is a risk that this data will be misused through AI Big Data and data mining without anyone noticing. This makes it more difficult to determine when and where such information was used.”


I continue to be impressed with ChatGPT’s capabilities, as well as several other new AI tools that can be used for transforming both our workplace and home life.

At the same time, I am alarmed at the copyright implications and concerned about the inappropriate ways that people may be relying on these tools for factual content. The accuracy of the information is much worse than what can be seen in a Google search, and no references are given to determine where the information was obtained that is provided.

Bottom line, this AI technology is a “work in progress” like many other new technologies.

A healthy level of professional concern (and fact checking) is warranted in this blogger’s opinion.
Daniel J. Lohrmann is an internationally recognized cybersecurity leader, technologist, keynote speaker and author.