After the most recent negotiations between striking SAG-AFTRA members and the AMPTP broke down, a bipartisan bill was introduced to protect performers and artists from having their likeness generated by AI.
According to Deadline, the bill introduced by four U.S. senators supports the demands that the strikes have been fighting for; it’s a key part of what SAG-AFTRA is seeking a fair deal on. Known as the No Fakes Act (or Nurture Originals, Foster Art, and Keep Entertainment Safe Act), the bill is sponsored by Sens. Chris Coons (D-DE), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), aims to bring in federal protections “against the misappropriation of voice and likeness performance in sound recordings and audiovisual works. It also prohibits the unauthorized use of digital replicas without the informed consent of the individuals being replicated.”
It would be a historic move to squash money-pinching tactics studios are looking to implement as a way to avoid paying talent a living wage—particularly actors who rely on background work. The No Fakes Act would supplement federal support to the working class threatened by generative AI being employed to replace people. Sentator Coons stated, “Creators around the nation are calling on Congress to lay out clear policies regulating the use and impact of generative AI, and Congress must strike the right balance to defend individual rights, abide by the First Amendment, and foster AI innovation and creativity.”
In a statement on the SAG-AFTRA site, President Fran Drescher responded. “A performer’s voice and their appearance are all part of their unique essence, and it’s not ok when those are used without their permission. Consent is key, and I’m grateful that Sens. Coons, Blackburn, Klobuchar and Tillis are working to give performers recourse and providing tools to remove harmful material.”
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