In the middle of this whole strike situation that’s put film and TV production on hold, Hollywood’s biggest studios seem to have some ideas about integrating artificial intelligence (AI) into the process of crafting screenplays. The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), the group that represents studios and streamers, recently shared their proposal with the Writers Guild of America (WGA), which includes their view on using generative AI tools like ChatGPT. This fancy bot can whip up loglines, pitch ideas, and create storylines within seconds. Now, the AMPTP wants to make it clear that they don’t want these tools to undermine the work of human writers. Instead, they want to embrace the technology. But here’s the thing – the proposal doesn’t mention anything about how the studios will handle the copyright issues surrounding AI-generated content. Basically, works created solely by AI can’t be copyrighted, so a human has to come in and rewrite the whole thing for it to be protected. John Lopez, a member of the WGA’s AI working group, points out that the studios need the writers in this situation. They can only claim copyright protection if they involve us in the process. But the studios are probably eyeing the intellectual property rights that come with AI-generated works. If a human writer touches the material created by AI, then the typical copyright protections kick in. So, the studios shared their position with the WGA, and the WGA, not too thrilled, responded saying that the proposal didn’t do enough to protect the writers. It seems like this AI issue is one of the main sticking points of the strike. Studios want to produce scripts generated by AI, but if those scripts don’t have copyright protection, well, that limits their opportunities for exploitation. The U.S. Copyright Office currently doesn’t see AI-generated works as eligible for copyright protection. They only grant protection to works that demonstrate human creativity. So, a federal judge recently ruled that AI-generated art couldn’t be protected by copyright law. All in all, this whole situation is about more than just copyright – it’s also about the studios trying to cut writers out of intellectual property rights. They see AI as a way to bypass us, but they don’t realize just how much they need us. On top of that, the AMPTP’s proposal doesn’t have any provision to prevent the use of writers’ work as training data for AI systems. It’s a complicated situation, and negotiations between the two sides are ongoing.