Artificial Intelligence

In late March, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed into law the Ensuring Likeness Voice and Image Security Act of 2024—known as the “ELVIS Act”—making Tennessee the first state to address head-on potential misuses of artificial intelligence (AI) related to an individual’s voice. The law prohibits individuals from using AI to generate and distribute replicas of another’s voice or image without their prior consent.

Many prominent members of the music and entertainment community have identified Tennessee’s law as an important step forward for the protection of artists’ (and others’) voice and likeness. Specifically, right of publicity laws across the nation typically provide that individuals have a property right in the use of their name, photograph, and likeness. However, these laws generally do not address the use of one’s voice or generative AI exploiting another’s image, likeness, or voice to generate unauthorized impersonations or replicas. In the age of AI cloning and deep fakes, these unauthorized works have caused great concern among those in the entertainment and media industries. The ELVIS Act is “first-of-its-kind” legislation to directly address these concerns by expanding Tennessee’s existing protections against the unauthorized commercial use of one’s rights of publicity.Continue Reading Tennessee Out Front: Enacting Protections Against AI Misuse in the Music Industry

Venable’s Advertising and Marketing Group hosted its 10th Advertising Law Symposium on March 21 in Washington, DC. The group welcomed in-house counsel, advertising executives, and marketing professionals for a full day of sessions on the latest developments in advertising law and what to watch for soon.

Here are some highlights:

Patchwork of Privacy Laws Makes Compliance a Challenge

Frequent data breaches and incidents like the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal have increased criticism of the United States’ approach to regulating privacy through a patchwork of federal and state laws and industry self-regulatory codes. But even harsh critiques have not been enough to spur Congress to pass a preemptive privacy law that would supersede the jumble of state laws and regulations and streamline things. Partner Rob Hartwell and associate Allie Monticollo said marketers and advertisers should watch what’s happening in the states and mitigate risk accordingly.Continue Reading Event in Review: 10th Advertising Law Symposium

On February 15, 2024, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced a two-step approach to tackling impersonation fraud. First, the FTC finalized a rule regulating the impersonation of businesses and government entities (the Impersonation Rule). Later that day, the FTC proposed a revision to the Impersonation Rule to extend liability to those impersonating individuals.

The Impersonation Rule deems it unfair or deceptive to falsely pose as or misrepresent affiliation with a government or business entity. This could include using government seals, business logos, or spoofed email addresses. Even more broadly, the rule prohibits using government or business lookalike insignias or marks without prior authorization. The rule will become effective 30 days after it has been finalized.Continue Reading Impersonation Rulemaking: FTC Takes Steps to Tackle AI

Moving at rapid speed, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has just announced its unanimous adoption of a new Declaratory Ruling finding that voice calls using artificial intelligence (AI)-generated voices fall under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).

The ruling takes effect immediately and gives state attorneys general powerful new tools to go after voice cloning scams. Under FCC rules, telemarketers that use robocalls subject to the TCPA are required to obtain prior express written consent from the consumer unless an exemption applies. The TCPA has always prohibited the use of both prerecorded and artificial voices but advances in AI-generated voices have prompted the FCC to specifically address their use.

In recent years, scammers and other parties have begun using AI to create fake and even “cloned” artificial voices, including those of celebrities, politicians, and even a call recipient’s family member. In this election season, there has been increasing concern about the use of voice clones to engage in voter suppression schemes.Continue Reading FCC Clarifies TCPA Rules to Affirmatively Restrict Use of AI-Generated Calls

On Thursday, October 12, a bipartisan group of senators—Chris Coons (D-Del.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)—released a Discussion Draft of the Nurture Originals, Foster Art, and Keep Entertainment Safe (dubbed the “NO FAKES”) Act that would protect the voice, image, or visual likeness of all individuals from unauthorized AI-generated digital replicas, also referred to as “deepfakes.” This draft bill, while focusing on protections required by the advancement of AI, would establish the first federal right of publicity—the right to protect and control the use of one’s voice, image, and visual likeness. The NO FAKES Act could have widespread impacts on the entertainment and media industries, among others. 

Generative AI has opened new worlds of creative opportunities, but with these creative innovations also comes the ability to exploit another’s voice, image, or visual likeness by creating nearly indistinguishable digital replicas. This has caused great concern among musicians, celebrities, actors, and politicians regarding viral AI-created deepfakes circulating on social media and the Internet more broadly. To date, advancements in AI technology used to create digital replicas have outpaced the current legal framework governing unauthorized use. Although there are existing laws that may be used to combat digital replicas, these laws either vary from state to state, creating a patchwork of differing protections based on where one is located, or do not directly address the harms caused by producing and distributing unauthorized digital replicas.Continue Reading AI Deepfake Bill: Senators Contemplate the First Federal Right of Publicity