At present, AI is transforming the landscape of content creation, providing a capability that was previously limited to a select few with advanced skills or technology. As this burgeoning technology evolves, users need to acknowledge and respect the rights of those who played a role in its development – the content creators who may find their roles altered by its emergence. While generative AI poses a genuine threat to the livelihood of creative professionals, it also presents risks to brands that have meticulously crafted their identity through visuals. However, in this dual scenario, both creative individuals and corporate entities have a significant opportunity. They can curate portfolios of their creative works and branded materials, employ meta-tagging, and leverage generative AI to produce authorized goods. This not only safeguards their brand identity but also opens avenues for additional revenue streams.

The primitive stance of Indian courts was conservative in this area. In Som Prakash Rekhi vs Union of India & Anr, AIR 1981 SC 212, the Supreme Court observed that ‘personality’ is the sole attribution of a legal person. Such a ‘personality’ is an entity that has the right to sue or can be sued by another entity. An AI is not capable of using such rights, nor can it perform the functions of a juristic person independently. For instance, it cannot enter into an agreement/transfer or acquire patent/patent application rights/ revoke an application. Hence, an AI fails to meet the standards for being deemed an inventor in India. However, in later cases such as Ferid Allani v. Union of India in 2019, the Delhi High Court, in its judgment, affirmed that AI-generated works are eligible for copyright protection provided they satisfy the criteria of originality and authorship outlined in the Copyright Act of 1957. Furthermore, the court established that the attribution of authorship for an AI-generated work should be assigned to the individual responsible for initiating the creation of the work, such as the programmer or user of the AI system. Thus, the legal position in the field of intersection between AI and IPR is still developing with the ever-changing facets of technology and AI and therefore, there are still various areas that lack clarity.

As AI continues to play an increasingly larger role in the innovation process and intellectual property in general and redefine the boundaries of what is possible, the legal and ethical considerations surrounding intellectual property rights will remain at the forefront of discussions. Striking a balance between fostering innovation and addressing the challenges posed by AI in the field of Intellectual property, which has become important than ever at present, requires a collaborative effort involving legal experts, policymakers, technologists, and ethicists. The evolving landscape of AI and IPR presents an opportunity to shape a framework that not only protects intellectual property but also ensures responsible and ethical AI development.


Adv. Minnu Bridgit

This blog is for information only and should not be treated as an opinion in the matter.

By |2024-01-25T23:51:28+00:00January 25th, 2024|IP Unplugged|0 Comments

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