The Future. A bipartisan team in the Senate has introduced a bill to protect individuals from unauthorized digital replicas, building on current name, image, and likeness laws. The bill is still a discussion draft, so plenty of work will be done on it before it ever comes up for a vote. But with Senator Chris Coon’s involvement (he’s the Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Intellectual Property Subcommittee), it’s safe to say the provisions have been thoroughly vetted and will likely be the framework for eventual legislation.
- The Nurture Originals, Foster Art, and Keep Entertainment Safe Act would bar the unauthorized production and distribution of AI-generated replicas of someone’s likeness or voice.
- Any person or company caught doing so would be liable for damages caused by the deepfake, which could include lost income or settlements for defamation or copyright infringement.
- If digital replicas are to be used, companies must be granted permission by the individual via informed consent, with that permission even needing to be obtained by the individual’s estate or heir within 70 years of their death.
There are a few exceptions to the rule due to First Amendment freedoms, including sports broadcasts, documentaries, biographical works, or for purposes of comment, criticism, or parody. (We’re sure South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone will be happy about that last bit).
The bill has already been endorsed by SAG-AFTRA (which is still on strike) and the Recording Industry Association of America.