Battle over AI Generated Images


The world of copyright infringement is evolving rapidly, and with the rise of AI-generated content, the battle lines are being redrawn. A recent lawsuit against AI-generated image service providers sheds light on the complexities of copyright issues in the digital age. As champions against copyright trolls, we at PicDefense believe it’s crucial for our community to be informed about these developments.

The Groundbreaking Lawsuit

Three artists, Sarah Anderson, Kelly McKernan, and Karla Ortiz, recently took on giants in the AI-image generation industry: Stability AI, Midjourney, and DevianArt. Their contention? That these companies had utilized their artwork to train their AI models, leading to copyright violations.

The Verdict and Its Implications

Judge William H. Orrick of the Northern District of California ruled that determining whether these AI-generated images violated copyright laws is currently “not plausible.” The core of the issue was that two out of the three artists hadn’t filed any copyrights for their work with the US Copyright Office. Anderson, on the other hand, had filed copyright for only 16 of her many images.

Judge Orrick’s statement highlighted the inherent challenges of this new frontier: “…I am not convinced that copyright claims based on a derivative theory can survive absent ‘substantial similarity’ type allegations.”

For the content creators and copyright-conscious among us, this means that merely proving an AI-generated image was inspired by their work might not be enough. They might need to demonstrate that the AI-generated content directly references or bears significant similarity to their original work.

What This Means for Copyright Infringement Battles

While this ruling may be a setback for artists, it’s not the end of the road. The judge allowed Anderson to pursue her claim of copyright infringement on the 16 pieces she had copyrighted. This suggests that if a work is protected by the US Copyright Office, technology companies might find it harder to dismiss copyright claims.

Moreover, this decision could influence other high-profile cases, such as Sarah Silverman’s case against Meta and a lawsuit against OpenAI. If Judge Orrick’s ruling sets a precedent, tech giants might face challenges if the original content had copyright protection.

The Takeaway for PicDefense Users

The landscape of copyright infringement is shifting, and as AI becomes more integrated into content creation, the challenges will continue to mount. It’s more critical than ever to be proactive about copyrighting your work and staying informed about developments in the field.

At PicDefense, we’re committed to helping our community navigate these challenges. We believe in empowering creators, standing up against copyright trolls, and ensuring that the digital world remains a space of creativity, not litigation.


The battle over AI-generated images is just beginning. As technology evolves, so do the challenges it presents. Stay vigilant, stay informed, and remember that PicDefense is here to support you every step of the way.

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