In a landmark move to protect the rights and identities of public figures, a bipartisan group of U.S. senators has introduced the “No Fakes Act.” This legislation aims to curb the unauthorized use of artificial intelligence (AI) in generating voice and likeness replicas of individuals, a growing concern in the digital age.
- A bipartisan group of U.S. senators has introduced the “No Fakes Act” to combat unauthorized AI-generated voice and likeness replicas of individuals.
- The legislation emphasizes the importance of obtaining explicit consent before using an individual’s likeness in AI-generated audiovisual or sound recordings.
- Certain representations, protected by the First Amendment, such as sports broadcasts, documentaries, and content meant for comment or parody, are exempted from the act.
- Posthumous rights to an individual’s likeness will be retained by executors or heirs for 70 years after the individual’s death.
- SAG-AFTRA has expressed strong support for the bill, emphasizing the intrinsic value of a performer’s voice and appearance.
- The bill has been backed by Senators Chris Coons, Marsha Blackburn, Amy Klobuchar, and Thom Tillis, introducing groundbreaking federal IP protections.
- The Motion Picture Association (MPA) stresses the need for a balanced approach that respects First Amendment rights while addressing the potential risks of AI-generated replicas.
A Stand Against Digital Impersonation
The Nurture Originals, Foster Art, and Keep Entertainment Safe Act, commonly referred to as the “NO FAKES Act,” is designed to hold individuals, corporations, and platforms accountable for producing or disseminating such unauthorized digital replicas. The proposed bill underscores the importance of consent, emphasizing that any AI-generated replica of an individual, used in audiovisual or sound recordings, must have the explicit approval of the person being replicated.
However, the legislation does provide certain exclusions. Representations that fall under the protection of the First Amendment, such as sports broadcasts, documentaries, biographical works, and content meant for comment, criticism, or parody, are exempted. Additionally, the draft stipulates that posthumous rights to an individual’s likeness will remain with the executors or heirs for 70 years after the individual’s passing.
Industry Reactions and Broader Implications
The Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) has been vocal in its support for the bill. Fran Drescher, SAG-AFTRA President, highlighted the intrinsic value of a performer’s voice and appearance, asserting the importance of consent in any form of replication.
The bill, championed by Senators Chris Coons (D-DE), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and Thom Tillis (R-NC), introduces groundbreaking federal IP protections. These protections are geared towards safeguarding voice and likeness performances in both sound recordings and audiovisual works.
The Motion Picture Association (MPA) has also provided its perspective on the NO FAKES Act. While the association acknowledges the potential risks of AI-generated replicas, it emphasizes the importance of First Amendment rights and the need for a balanced approach.
The introduction of the “No Fakes Act” comes at a pivotal time when advancements in AI have made it increasingly easy to create realistic digital replicas of individuals. As the boundaries between the real and virtual worlds continue to blur, this legislation serves as a timely reminder of the ethical considerations that must guide technological progress. The entertainment industry, tech giants, and public figures will be keenly watching this bill’s developments, which promises to set a precedent for digital rights in the AI era.