Google is accused of illegally using copyrighted content and stealing the personal information of millions of Americans to train its AI products.
The allegations were made in a proposed class action lawsuit in San Francisco on Tuesday by eight individuals, who say they are seeking to represent the millions of internet users affected.
If Google is found guilty of violating federal privacy and consumer protection laws, it could owe at least $5 billion in damages.
Why we care. Marketers are widely being encouraged to embrace AI and implement technologies such as ChatGPT and Bard into their strategies. However, if AI products are being developed using content and data that has been taken illegally, this could prove to be problematic, as it runs the risk of potential copyright issues.
What has Google allegedly done? The claimants allege Google has:
The eight plaintiffs have accused Google of taking a variety of content they shared on social media without permission, ranging from photos on dating websites to playlists saved on Spotify to videos uploaded onto TikTok.
One of the claimants, who is described as a best-selling author from Texas, more specifically accused Google of copying a book they wrote in its entirety to train Bard.
Who is suing Google? There are eight plaintiffs who remain anonymous and are known only by their initials.
The lawsuit was filed by Clarkson Law Firm against Google, its parent company Alphabet as well as Google’s AI subsidiary DeepMind. If Clarkson Law Firm sounds familiar, that’s because it’s the same company that filed a similar lawsuit against OpenAI last month.
What do the claimants want? The plaintiffs want Google to give its users the option to opt out of its “illicit data collection”. They are also asking the search engine to delete its existing catalog of data – otherwise, they say Google should pay the owners of that content “fair compensation.”
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What have the claimants said? Ryan Clarkson, managing partner of the Clarkson Law Firm, issued a statement:
Tim Giordano, an attorney working on behalf of the plaintiffs at Clarkson Law Firm, told CNN:
What has Google said? Google has denied the claims and described the lawsuit as "baseless." In a statement, Halimah DeLaine Prado, Google’s general counsel, said:
The post Google sued for allegedly stealing content, data to train AI products appeared first on Search Engine Land.
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