On October 4, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) hosted a virtual roundtable discussion on the “Creative Economy and Generative AI.” This event included speakers from the FTC, including Chair Lina Khan, and panelists representing various creative industries, including authors, voice actors, models, and visual artists. Although the panelists expressed concern about Generative AI’s (“GenAI”) potential impact on creative industries, many also expressed optimism that GenAI could augment, rather than replace, human creativity.
Chair Khan opened the event by stating that the FTC is looking closely at how GenAI tools could “turbocharge fraud, entrench the dominance of firms that control the necessary raw inputs like cloud services and computing power, and potentially lock in business models that incentivize the endless surveillance of our personal data.” Chair Khan also noted that the FTC has been “very clear that…there’s no AI exemption to the laws on the books” referencing “laws that already prohibit unfair methods of competition, or collusion, or discrimination, or deception.”
The panelists expressed concern about GenAI’s current and potential impact on their various industries while also recognizing that GenAI could support human creativity. For example, panelists expressed particular concerns about the use of their creative works to train GenAI tools. Panelists generally agreed that an opt-in consent model for the use of creative works as inputs for training GenAI is in the creative industry’s best interest. The panelists also discussed the difficulty artists face when competing against GenAI tools. In general, the panelists stated the importance of greater transparency, credit to original creators, compensation for works used to train GenAI, and labeling of GenAI outputs.
FTC Commissioner Alvaro Bedoya closed the session expressing concern about AI fraud and how creative works could be used by GenAI. He stated that the FTC needs to be “free to meet the innovations of large powerful entities that will stifle competition in American industry in whatever corner it may be found.”
A recording of the event can be found here.