‘Hollywood Strike Was Just The First Of Many AI Labour Disputes’
After a historic industrial action spanning 148 days, Hollywood screenwriters secured significant guardrails against the use of AI in one of the first major AI labour battles.
In the coming weeks, Writers Guild of America members will vote on whether to ratify a tentative agreement. AI-generated writing cannot be source material.
The proposed contract requires studios and production companies to reveal to writers if any material given to them has been generated by AI partially or in full.
Model For Other Content-Creation Industries
“I hope it will be a model for a lot of other content-creation industries,” said Tom Davenport, a professor of information technology at Babson College.
However, the deal between WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) doesn’t prohibit all uses of AI as both sides believe it can be a worthwhile tool.
The agreement states that writers can use AI if the company consents. But a company cannot make it mandatory for a writer to use the evolving technology.
Legal Landscape Around AI Remains Uncertain
When the Hollywood screenwriters paused all operations and walked onto the streets in protest, it was just five months after Microsoft-backed OpenAI released ChatGPT.
The AI chatbot that can write essays, craft stories and have sophisticated conversations from just a handful of prompts is the trigger behind the raging AI battle.
Under the draft contract, “the parties acknowledge that the legal landscape around the use of [generative AI] is uncertain and rapidly developing.”
Not Enough Was Done!
Some sceptics doubt the writers made significant progress in negotiations. According to media mogul Barry Diller, chairman of the digital media company IAC, not enough was done.
“They spent months trying to craft words to protect writers from AI, and they ended up with a paragraph that protected nothing from no one,” he told CNBC.
The terms WGA achieves will be monitored by others, especially the actors union, SAG-AFTRA, that’s demanding safeguards against AI and seeking better compensation from streaming.