Nicki Minaj, 21 Savage, Cardi B & More Support Bill Regulating AI Voice Cloning Via Open Letter

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Nearly 300 artists, songwriters, actors and other creators are voicing support for a new bipartisan Congressional bill that would regulate the use of artificial intelligence for cloning voices and likenesses via a new print ad running in USA Today on Friday (Feb. 2).

The bill — dubbed the No Artificial Intelligence Fake Replicas And Unauthorized Duplications Act (“No AI FRAUD” Act) and introduced in the U.S. House on Jan. 10 — would establish a federal framework for protecting voices and likenesses in the age of AI.

Placed by the Human Artistry Campaign, the ad features such bold-faced names as 21 Savage, Bette Midler, Cardi B & Offset, Chuck D, Common, Gloria Estefan, Jason Isbell, the estate of Johnny Cash, Kelsea Ballerini, Lainey Wilson, Lauren Daigle, Lamb of God, Mary J. Blige, Missy Elliott, Nicki Minaj, Questlove, Reba McEntire, Sheryl Crow, Smokey Robinson, the estate of Tomy Petty, Trisha Yearwood and Vince Gill.

“The No AI FRAUD Act would defend your fundamental human right to your voice & likeness, protecting everyone from nonconsensual deepfakes,” the ad reads. “Protect your individuality. Support HR 6943.”

The Human Artistry Campaign is a coalition of music industry organizations that in March 2023 released a series of seven core principles regarding artificial intelligence. They include ensuring that AI developers acquire licenses for artistic works used in developing and training AI models, as well as that governments refrain from creating “new copyright or other IP exemptions that allow AI developers to exploit creators without permission or compensation.”

In addition to musical artists, the USA Today ad also bears the names of actors such as Bradley Cooper, Clark Gregg, Debra Messing, F. Murray Abraham, Fran Drescher, Laura Dern, Kevin Bacon, Kyra Sedgwick, Kristen Bell, Kiefer Sutherland, Julianna Margulies and Rosario Dawson.

The No AI FRAUD Act was introduced by Rep. María Elvira Salazar (R-FL) alongside Reps. Madeleine Dean (D-PA), Nathaniel Moran (R-TX), Joe Morelle (D-NY) and Rob Wittman (R-VA). The bill is said to be based upon the Senate discussion draft Nurture Originals, Foster Art, and Keep Entertainment Safe Act (“NO FAKES” Act), which was unveiled in October.

“It’s time for bad actors using AI to face the music,” said Rep. Salazar in a statement at the time the legislation was announced. “This bill plugs a hole in the law and gives artists and U.S. citizens the power to protect their rights, their creative work, and their fundamental individuality online.”

Spurred in part by recent incidents including the viral “fake Drake” track “Heart On My Sleeve,” the No AI FRAUD Act would establish a federal standard barring the use of AI to copy the voices and likenesses of public figures without consent. As it stands, an artist’s voice, image or likeness is typically covered by “right of publicity” laws that protect them from commercial exploitation without authorization, but those laws vary state by state.

The bill was introduced on the same day a similar piece of legislation — the Ensuring Likeness Voice and Image Security (ELVIS) Act — was unveiled in Tennessee by Governor Bill Lee. That bill would update the state’s Protection of Personal Rights law “to include protections for songwriters, performers, and music industry professionals’ voice from the misuse of artificial intelligence (AI),” according to a press release.

Since its unveiling, the No AI Fraud Act has received support from a range of music companies and organizations including the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), Universal Music Group, the National Music Publishers’ Assocation (NMPA), the Recording Academy, SoundExchange, the American Association of Independent Music (A2IM) and the Latin Recording Academy.

You can view the full ad below.

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