OpenAI, Clarkson Law firm v OpenAI

The title of the latest privacy class action lawsuit against OpenAI is Clarkson Law Firm v. OpenAI. It was filed on June 28, 2023, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. The lawsuit is still in its early stages, and it is not yet clear how it will be resolved. However, the lawsuit is a sign of the growing concern about the privacy implications of artificial intelligence. As AI technology continues to develop, it is likely that we will see more lawsuits like this one in the future.We will keep updating this blog post with more updates.

The lawsuit was filed by a group of individuals who allege that OpenAI violated their privacy by using their personal data to train its AI models without their consent. The lawsuit specifically alleges that OpenAI used data scraped from the internet, including social media posts, blog posts, and Wikipedia articles, to train its AI models. The lawsuit also alleges that OpenAI did not disclose to users that their data was being used for this purpose.

The lawsuit seeks damages for the plaintiffs’ alleged privacy violations, as well as an injunction preventing OpenAI from continuing to use users’ data in this way.

The lawsuit specifically alleges that OpenAI used data scraped from the internet, including social media posts, blog posts, and Wikipedia articles, to train its AI models. The lawsuit also alleges that OpenAI did not disclose to users that their data was being used for this purpose.

The lawsuit seeks damages for the plaintiffs’ alleged privacy violations, as well as an injunction preventing OpenAI from continuing to use users’ data in this way.

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Here are some of the specific claims made in the class action lawsuit:

  • OpenAI violated the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) by collecting and using personal information without users’ consent.
  • OpenAI violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by collecting and using personal information for a purpose not authorized by the FCRA.
  • OpenAI violated the federal Wiretap Act by collecting and using personal information without users’ knowledge or consent.
  • OpenAI violated the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) by accessing and using personal information without authorization.

Open AI’s growing number of legal challenges

The class-action lawsuit filed against OpenAI adds to the growing number of legal challenges faced by companies involved in the development and utilization of AI technologies. In this particular case, sixteen individuals have sued OpenAI, alleging that their personal information was collected without proper notice through the company’s AI products, particularly those based on ChatGPT.

The lawsuit, filed in a Federal Court in San Francisco, accuses OpenAI of bypassing legal data acquisition methods and unlawfully gathering personal information without compensation to the individuals involved. The plaintiffs’ law firm, Clarkson, argues that OpenAI’s actions infringe upon privacy rights, intellectual property rights, and potentially violate copyright laws. Additionally, Microsoft, which has made a significant financial commitment to OpenAI, has been named as a defendant in the lawsuit.

According to the complaint, OpenAI and Microsoft deviated from established protocols by engaging in data scraping activities, collecting approximately 300 billion words from various sources without proper consent. This data allegedly included personal information obtained without permission, violating privacy laws and ethical data practices. Furthermore, OpenAI is accused of failing to comply with the legal requirement to register as a data broker.

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The lawsuit also raises concerns about OpenAI’s insufficient measures to prevent children under 13 from accessing its AI tools, echoing previous criticisms directed at other tech giants. The plaintiffs seek damages totaling $3 billion from Microsoft and OpenAI, although this figure is likely a placeholder and not an actual assessment of damages.

This lawsuit is part of a broader trend where companies involved in AI development face legal disputes related to data usage, intellectual property, defamation, and other legal implications. Similar concerns have emerged in cases such as Japan’s warning to OpenAI regarding privacy regulations and Getty Images’ lawsuit against Stability AI for unauthorized use of copyrighted photographs in training an AI system.

Furthermore, OpenAI previously faced a defamation lawsuit by a radio host who claimed that ChatGPT wrongfully accused him of fraud. These cases shed light on the potential risks associated with AI-generated content and the legal ramifications that may arise.

Overall, the legal challenges faced by OpenAI reflect the complex legal landscape surrounding AI development and underscore the need for robust regulations and ethical practices in the field.

Other ongoing cases against  Generative AI:

  • Andersen v. Stability AI et al. (filed January 2023): This class action lawsuit alleges that three artists’ copyrights were infringed by generative AI platforms Midjourney, Stability AI, and DeviantArt, which trained their AI on images scraped from the internet without permission.
  • Getty Images v. Stability AI (filed March 2023): This lawsuit alleges that Stability AI copied 12 million of Getty Images’ images without permission to train its Stable Diffusion AI art tool.
  • Copilot Authors v. Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI (filed January 2023): This class action lawsuit alleges that Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI violated copyright law by allowing Copilot, a code-generating AI system trained on billions of lines of public code, to regurgitate licensed code snippets without providing credit.
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