From Billie Eilish to Stevie Wonder, hundreds of musicians condemn AI’s ‘assault on human creativity’

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While AI seems to be creeping into every industry these days and has nearly limitless opportunities to change everything from how we travel to how we use Google to what we cook for dinner, it could have dire consequences for the music industry. 

That’s why more than 200 artists, including the biggest names of the past decades across multiple genres, signed an open letter warning about the massive dangers AI poses to the world of music. 

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The letter, put together by nonprofit Artist Rights Alliance, which advocates for musicians, was first published by Variety and is signed by names like Katy Perry, Stevie Wonder, the estate of Bob Marley, Billie Eilish, Jon Bon Jovi, Smokey Robinson, and the estate of Frank Sinatra. A complete list of signees is available at the original Variety link.

The letter not only calls out the practice of using artist voices without consent to train AI, but it also characterizes the predatory use of AI as an “assault on human creativity.”

“We, the undersigned members of the artist and songwriting communities,” the letter begins, “call on AI developers, technology companies, platforms, and digital music services to cease the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to infringe upon and devalue the rights of human artists.”

The letter goes on to say that AI has enormous potential to advance creativity (our own David Gewirtz used AI to easily publish his music on all the major services), but the technology also has the potential to “undermine artists, songwriters, musicians and rightsholders” and in turn threaten their livelihoods.

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Some of the biggest companies are using artist voices to train AI, the letter states, and those efforts are “directly aimed at replacing the work of human artists.”

The open letter closes with: “Unchecked, AI will set in motion a race to the bottom that will degrade the value of our work and prevent us from being fairly compensated for it. This assault on human creativity must be stopped. We must protect against the predatory use of AI to steal professional artists’ voices and likenesses, violate creators’ rights, and destroy the music ecosystem.”

The letter asks companies, platforms, and digital music services to pledge not to develop or deploy AI-generated music technology, tools, or content.

Also: The White House plans to regulate the government’s use of AI

The issue of AI in entertainment has become increasingly contentious in recent years. In 2024, it’s been discussed at Congressional hearings and served as inspiration for a new law in Tennessee meant to protect artists. In 2023, Hollywood screenwriters went on strike over AI-generated content and streaming platform Spotify decided to remove AI-generated content that mimicked real voices.

AI-generated music isn’t going away, but hopefully, artists can still be compensated fairly. 

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