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International Screenwriters Guilds Create ‘Ethical Framework’ for AI Use

Photo by Gertruda Valaseviciute via Unsplash

International Screenwriters Guilds Create ‘Ethical Framework’ for AI Use

By Movieguide® Contributor

International writers’ guilds are coming together to create an “ethical framework” for using AI in screenwriting. 

The Federation of Screenwriters in Europe (FSE) and the International Affiliation of Writers Guilds (IAWG) have worked together to create five principles concerning the use of AI in screenwriting. 

The resolution they’ve created will cover their guilds as well as those in North America, Europe, India, Israel, Korea, New Zealand and South Africa.

“While we applaud the work of the EU to enact the AI Act, there are unresolved issues with respect to the unauthorized use of our intellectual property for training large language models, and uncertainty regarding authorship and copyright of machine-generated script material,” said Carolin Otto, a German screenwriter and president of FSE. “We intend to voice our concerns in both national and global policy arenas, as well as develop standard language film and television writers can demand in their contracts.”

FSE and IAWG’s five principles include the idea that “only writers are capable of creating ‘literary material’ and that large language models/AI cannot be used to replace writers.”

The rest of the principles state that they are “ensuring transparency around the use of AI-generated material if it is used to perform any writing service on a writer’s work (e.g. polishing/re-writing); introducing explicit consent on writers’ intellectual property being used to train AI; ensuring AI cannot be entitled to authors’ rights or copyright; and introducing fair remuneration where writers’ IP is include in LLMs or AI programs.”

IAWG chair Jennifer Davidson said, “The members of the IAWG seek to build on the hard-won protections our sister Guilds in America, the WGAE and the WGAW, were able to achieve during their strike: namely that it should be a tool to enhance our writing process, not diminish the value of our work or replace us.”

During last year’s WGA strikes, writers and studios came to an agreement about the use of AI. 

“Writers can use AI if the company consents,” AP News explained. “But a company cannot require a writer to use AI software.”

Tom Davenport, a professor of information technology at Babson College, told the publication, “I hope it will be a model for a lot of other content-creation industries. It pretty much ensures that if you’re going to use AI, it’s going to be humans working alongside AI. That, to me, has always been the best way to use any form of AI.”

Movieguide® previously reported on the use of AI in screenwriting:

Additionally, using AI would disrupt humans’ jobs, create other ethical problems and be costly to implement.

“An estimated 62,000 entertainment jobs in California spanning film, TV, music and gaming will be disrupted by the rise of artificial intelligence within the next three years,” the LA Times reported, noting that another “204,000 entertainment jobs across the United States will be affected by AI during the same time frame.”

The use of AI in the entertainment industry was a hotly debated issue in last year’s WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes.

“The WGA’s deal includes guardrails around the use of generative AI in the creative process, including a provision that gives the union itself the power to challenge the use of writers’ existing work to train AI software programs. The SAG-AFTRA agreement with the studios includes some, but not all, of the union’s demands on AI,” Variety reported.

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4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.