Adobe, the renowned software company, has introduced its latest instrument for creating generative AI art, Adobe Firefly. Recognizing the legal concerns of enterprise users regarding permissions when it comes to artwork created by generative AI, Adobe has taken proactive measures to address these worries. In the form of an indemnity clause, the company pledges to cover any copyright claims related to Firefly-generated outputs, offering peace of mind to its enterprise customers.
Scott Belsky, Adobe's chief strategy officer, acknowledged the concerns of enterprise clients during the Upfront Summit. Many of these large-scale users are cautious about utilizing generative AI without a comprehensive understanding of its training methodology. Unlike using stock images, where acquiring the necessary rights and model releases is straightforward, generative AI art raises a level of scrutiny and concern regarding its commercial viability.
To mitigate any legal risks, Adobe has meticulously trained Firefly on legally permissible content. The model has been trained on Adobe Stock images, which the company has broad permission to use, as well as openly licensed content and public domain materials where copyright has expired. By avoiding training on the public internet, Adobe ensures that the content used does not violate any copyright laws.
According to Dane Rao, Adobe's general counsel, this strategic approach significantly reduces the risks associated with offering the indemnity clause. By training Firefly on a limited set of content for which they had explicit permission to use, Adobe can confidently back their enterprise clients in the event of litigation. If a client faces a copyright infringement claim related to a Firefly-generated output that appears to be someone else's work, Adobe commits to indemnifying them, as they know the origin of their work.
Furthermore, Ray Wang, founder and chief analyst at Constellation Research, views Adobe's strategy as brilliant, benefiting both the company and contributors to Adobe Stock. The indemnification solely applies to Adobe Stock, where Adobe retains ownership of all creative arrangements. Additionally, creators can generate revenue from derivatives of Adobe Stock created using Firefly.
Rao clarifies that the indemnification is specific to Firefly-generated outputs and does not extend to any other potential copyright violations. For instance, incorporating copyrighted characters like Spider-Man would not be covered. This approach is more akin to an insurance policy than a legal gimmick, assuring customers that using this technology for commercial purposes is secure.
While the legal landscape surrounding generative AI art remains unsettled, enterprise users understand the likelihood of legal challenges. The indemnity clause provides them with reassurance and confidence.
Likewise, Adobe, armed with knowledge of the content used to train the model, feels similarly secure, even in the face of potential legal disputes and the possibility of making payments over time.
By training the model on legally permissible content and offering indemnification for Firefly-generated outputs, Adobe aims to alleviate worries and foster a climate of trust in the commercial use of this innovative technology.