In light of the increasing use of artificial intelligence (AI) in generating content, Universal Music Group (UMG) has expressed concerns over the potential misuse of copyrighted material by AI-generated music. The music industry giant has requested that music streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music block any AI-generated music from their platforms.

This comes as OpenAI released their latest version of AI chatbot, ChatGPT-4, and other similar AI technologies which have led to a surge in AI-generated content. However, not everyone has welcomed the capabilities of these technologies when they are left unchecked.

According to a report by the Financial Times on April 13, UMG has been sending out requests to take down AI-generated songs that have been popping up on streaming services with increasing frequency. It is reported that UMG is concerned about AI bots using intellectual property to produce music that is virtually identical to that of actual artists.

AI bots have so far had access to music catalogs on streaming platforms, which developers have used to train the technology. However, UMG is concerned that this emerging technology poses significant issues as AI could be trained to compose a song that is lyrically similar to that of Taylor Swift, for instance, but with vocals and themes of other popular artists like Bruno Mars and Harry Styles.

The output that AI generates is due to the fact that it has been trained on the intellectual property of these artists. UMG is taking an artist-first stance and has made it clear in emails to streaming services that they will not hesitate to take steps to protect their rights and those of their artists.

Examples of AI-generated music, including a song featuring an AI-version of Jay-Z and an AI model of Kanye West singing along to the tracks of Drake’s “Hold On,” have been circulating on Twitter and popular streaming platforms. Furthermore, entire YouTube pages have emerged that use AI technology to recreate well-known music.

This is only the beginning, and the music industry is set to face significant challenges in its efforts to prevent AI technology from exploiting intellectual property rights. Google has recently announced its own machine-learning music apparatus called MusicLM, which has the potential to generate “high-fidelity music from text descriptions.” However, it remains to be seen how this technology will be used and whether it will infringe on intellectual property rights.