Lot of doom & gloom from M.b community in @joshuapsteele’s overdue thread on what AI Large Language Models (LLMs) mean for indie bloggers.
Rightly so: it’s not good for human writers. Even before you get onto the wider social issues the bloggers identify, there’s the pure fact of greater competition for readers & the muddying of trust about content’s human origins.
And the greatest irony is every one of these critical posts will end up powering a future LLM, and no one mentions the fact that their writing is probably in the 2001-2021 soup scraped to train it!
So basically it’s net bad for us, unless we find upsides using it write. But people come to M.b to get away from AI (algorithmic feeds, bots etc), so are likely gonna wanna keep drafting in their personal voice themselves.
We weren’t looking to get paid for our personal blogging. In fact we’re paying to do it.
But now someone’s getting very rich from it.
Let’s make sure we get paid!
For over a decade we whined about FB invading our privacy. Then I joined a class-action lawsuit and won a $400 check from them. Trust me it feels better. This was only thanks to strong legislation and a lawyer.
Let’s cut the decade of hand-wringing about AI and lawyer up now while we’ve still got law & citizen-rights.
LLMs are built on the back of the labour of open-web publishers like us.
We should sue Open AI for failing to recognise and pay us for their Proprietary tech. It’s not just corporate legal teams like Getty Images’s who can have a go: independent lawyer Matthew Butterick has worthily teamed up with a law-firm to file class-action lawsuits against GH CoPilot and Stable Diffusion.
It seems LLM suits will have to lean on copyright law. A system which is unduly protective of dead humans > living ones sure. But a dead human > dead machine, so let’s go with it!
M.b bloggers have the best chance to file damages because we pay to publish costs: so domain + account, around 100 bucks per year. I think getting a year’s worth of that would be a reasonable target per blogger.
I’m not a lawyer. I doubt many on fediverse are, lawyers aren’t known for spending time writing for free.
If there is one, especially an IP lawyer, I think you could basically combine Butterick’s two suits: CoPilot for targeting Open AI + Stable Diffusion for the technology & plaintiffs, adapting from images to text. I would serve as a plaintiff if needed, though there are bloggers here far more prolific than me pre-2021, and many more errr American.
If it’s anything like the Facebook BIPA suit, you stand to bank 8-figures! I kid you not: the lawyers took (15% of $650m) over a hundred mil!
The bloggers have nothing to lose but their Tweet chains. They have a few hundred bucks to win. Bloggers of all countries, unite!