Musicians take their protests of AI straight to the top.

A much more civilized affair than the Capitol riots, 21st September saw songwriters and composers arrive at Capitol Hill in their droves. The ASCAP-organised event saw the creators sending a message that in an increasingly digital age – powered more and more by artificial intelligence – human creation needs to be valued and protected.

The ‘Advocacy Day’ organised by ASCAP is part of the PROs ‘Stand with Songwriters’ campaign. The campaign aims to promote human importance with a stance that doesn’t oppose AI involvement but instead looks to see that Artificial Intelligence is treated wisely to enhance the real people in music.

Humans first. That is our position

-ASCAP CEO Beth Matthews at the 2023 ASCAP AI Symposium

The ASCAP Board of Directors have outlined their “six key, creator-centric principles guiding our response to AI”:

Human Creators First | Prioritizing rights and compensation for human creativity

Transparency in identifying AI vs. human-generated works and retaining metadata

Consent | Protecting the right to decide whether your work is included in an AI training license

Compensation | Making sure creators are paid fairly when their work is used in ANY way by AI, which is best accomplished in a free market, NOT with government-mandated licensing that essentially eliminates consent

Credit when creators’ works are used in new AI-generated music

Global Consistency | An even playing field that values intellectual property across the global music and data ecosystem

The Capitol Hill event saw the group commissioning politicians to take notice and introduce legislature that will ensure the protection of human agency within the creative world.