Major Record Labels Sue AI Music Companies Over Copyright Disputes

The lawsuits allege that to train their AI services, the companies had to copy decades’ worth of recordings.

AP/Ashley Landis, file
Taylor Swift performs during the opener of her Eras tour at Glendale, Arizona in March. AP/Ashley Landis, file

The world’s leading record labels have sued two prominent artificial intelligence music companies, alleging copyright infringement.

Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and Warner Music Group, among others, filed lawsuits on Monday against Uncharted Labs, the creator of Suno and Udio AI programs. The programs allow users to generate songs from text prompts.

The rise of accessible AI tools capable of creating realistic music, including full songs using AI versions of real artists’ voices, has raised several legal and ethical questions. Many artists fear that generative AI could undermine their work and compensation.

Coordinated by the Recording Industry Association of America, the lawsuits were filed in federal courts in Massachusetts and New York.

“The music community has embraced AI and is already collaborating with responsible developers to create sustainable AI tools centered on human creativity,” said the recording industry association’s chairman and chief executive, Mitch Glazier. “But we can only succeed if developers are willing to work together with us.”

“Unlicensed services like Suno and Udio set back the promise of genuinely innovative AI for us all by copying an artist’s life’s work without consent or compensation,” he added.

The lawsuits allege that to build services like Suno or Udio, the companies had to copy decades’ worth of the world’s most popular sound recordings to train their models. Both AI companies have been “evasive” about their data sources, according to the lawsuits.

The lawsuits claim that it’s “obvious” what these music generators were trained on. Their models could only produce such realistic songs if they had been trained on vast quantities of sound recordings from various artists and genres, many of which are copyrighted by these record labels.

The New York Sun

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