200+ ARTISTS CALL ON AI DEVELOPERS, TECH PLATFORMS NOT TO DEVALUE MUSIC AND UNDERMINE ARTISTS’ RIGHTS

Artist Rights Alliance
3 min readApr 2, 2024

Full text of the list of artists and songwriter signatories available HERE-

WASHINGTON, DC, APRIL 2, 2024 — The Artist Rights Alliance (ARA), a non-profit artist-led education and advocacy organization, issued an open letter supported by more than 200 artists calling “… on AI developers, technology companies, platforms, and digital music services to cease the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to infringe upon and devalue the rights of human artists.”

While AI-related threats such as deepfakes and voice cloning continue to rightfully attract significant scrutiny, the letter also highlights two related trends that are among the most serious and irresponsible uses of AI, including:

· The use of musical works by AI developers without permission to train and produce AI “copycats”; and

· The use of AI “sound” to dilute royalty obligations.

“Working musicians are already struggling to make ends meet in the streaming world, and now they have the added burden of trying to compete with a deluge of AI-generated noise,” explains Jen Jacobsen, Executive Director of the ARA. “The unethical use of generative AI to replace human artists will devalue the entire music ecosystem — for artists and fans alike.”

In part, the letter states that:

“Make no mistake: we believe that, when used responsibly, AI has enormous potential to advance human creativity and in a manner that enables the development and growth of new and exciting experiences for music fans everywhere…. Unfortunately, some platforms and developers are employing AI to sabotage creativity and undermine artists, songwriters, musicians and rightsholders.

“We must protect against the predatory use of AI to steal professional artists’ voices and likenesses, violate creators’ rights, and destroy the music ecosystem. We call on all digital music platforms and music-based services to pledge that they will not develop or deploy AI music-generation technology, content, or tools that undermine or replace the human artistry of songwriters and artists or deny us fair compensation for our work.”

This letter follows intensifying discussion across the globe on the responsible use of AI in music. Already, the state of Tennessee has enacted the so-called ELVIS Act, enhancing its “right of publicity” protections. The ELVIS Act is formally titled the “Ensuring Likeness Voice and Image Security Act.” Similar legislation is being discussed in the US Congress and in several US states.

Click here to join the movement.

About the Artist Rights Alliance

The Artist Rights Alliance is an artist-run, non-profit organization fighting for songwriters and musicians in the modern music economy, co-founded by GRAMMY winner Rosanne Cash. It is led by a Board of Directors including artist manager Thomas Manzi, John McCrea of CAKE, critically acclaimed Americana singer/songwriter Tift Merritt, award-winning producer Ivan Barias, world guitar innovator Matthew Montfort, and Indie label executive and musician Maggie Vail. ARA works to ensure artists are at the table when decisions are made on policies that affect their lives and livelihoods and empowers artists to advocate directly for themselves through classes, events, and presentations to demystify music, politics, and the spaces where they intersect.

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For more information, please visit:

https://artistrightsalliance.org

Media Contacts

Paul Freundlich

Shaun Gold

pfa Entertainment Media & Marketing

paulf@pfamedia.net

sgold@pfamedia.net

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Artist Rights Alliance

Artist-run, non-profit advocating for musicians, performers, & songwriters in the digital landscape. (Formerly the Content Creators Coalition or “c3”)