ChatGPT and Underlying Copyright Malady


There were a tonne of articles on Chat GPT and other AI bots on the internet and in social media. John McCarthy, an American computer scientist, is known for coining the phrase artificial intelligence (AI). Artificial intelligence (AI) is the study of how to programme machines to act logically, solve issues, and do tasks in the kinds of challenging circumstances where humans need intelligence to succeed. AI tries to make machines replicate human intelligence and behaviour when carrying out specific activities, such as language translation, speech recognition, visual perception, and decision-making. Content is being produced by AI models, and it might be challenging to distinguish between content produced by humans and content produced by AI models. It is unclear whether the author is aware of any legal precedents regarding the ownership of the intellectual property rights of the content created using these models.


By utilising deep learning techniques, ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence language model created by Open AI, produces responses to input in natural language that are human-like. It is trained on a vast corpus of textual data, including items protected by copyright, such novels, essays, and other creative works. As a result, exploiting or disseminating work created by Chat GPT raises a number of copy right-related concerns. Chatbot or ChatGPT is a computer programme that mimics human communication using artificial intelligence and natural language processing. It is able to write articles, translate, summarise, respond to follow-up inquiries, and produce information that is copyright-protected. It was created by OpenAI, a company that conducts AI research and application.

ChatGPT’s Terms of Use & other policies

The Terms of Use state that “[a]s between the parties and to the extent permitted by applicable law, you own all Input, and subject to your compliance with these Terms, OpenAI hereby assigns to you all its right, title and interest in and to Output.” Input refers to the question fed by the user and the answer generated by the chatbot is the Output. The part of the ToU referred to above, won’t be enforceable in the US or India, on the basis of the current legal landscape. 

The Law of Copyright in India

With the growing popularity of AI comes the necessity to safeguard intellectual property, such as copyright. There is no simple way to comprehend how India’s complicated copyright rules work. AI is becoming more and more popular, which makes it important to protect intellectual property like copyright. The intricate functioning of India’s copyright laws cannot be understood in a straightforward manner. In India, copyright is created as soon as a work is produced, and there are no formalities involved; copyright registration is optional rather than required. Copyright is a “right in rem,” which for a set number of years prohibits anyone from utilising the work in any way.

A work must be original and satisfy a number of requirements in India in order to be protected. The author of the work is entitled to all rights relating to the originality of the work in various kinds of intellectual property, including original literary work, under the Indian Copy Right Act of 1957. In addition, section 17 of the law states that the original owner of the copyright is the author of the work; therefore, in the absence of a contract, the proprietor is presumed to be the original owner of the copyright. There are several statutory exceptions to India’s copyright laws (S 52). The following are some of the most typical ones: court procedures, news reporting, criticism, research purposes, and educational and research reasons.

Technical constraints with assignment of output

It appears technically and practically difficult to allocate output to the user and this would be unsuccessful on many levels. Let’s assess the technological problems from an Indian perspective. First off, it is not legally tenable to assume that ChatGPT immediately transfers ownership of any work it creates to OpenAI. Under Sec. 17, India has a human author requirement, as can be evidenced from: i) Sec. 16 of the Act states that “no person” is entitled to copyright, except under the statute; ii) Application for Registration of Copyright (Form-XIV) requires disclosure of name, nationality and address; and iii) in case of computer-generated works, Sec. 2(d)(vi) of the Act allows grant of authorship to the person “who causes the work to be created”.  

What if the AI is infringing someone’s copyright?

Conqueror or Creator –  Is AI driven content infringement of copyright?

AI machines lack originality, autonomy, and creativity. They lack an independent thought,  since they neither have a soul or heart. AI bots are merely computers that execute commands from humans. To put it another way, the only thing that can be said about them is that they are programmed to carry out specific duties like responding to inquiries or choosing actions depending on data provided by the human user.

Who will own the rights to the works generated by Artificial Intelligence?

These AI models, like ChatGPT, create content that is derived from the writings of other authors and drawn from several literary and other works.  There is no copyright violation if the content was inspired by an already existing work.  Whoever generated or created the content, whether it is the OPEN AI or the input supplier or both, is not immediately obvious. Though there may be certain exclusions based on the individual terms and conditions, it is likely that the user will maintain ownership of any copyright in any item they submit. Therefore, before sending any resources to an AI authoring tool, users should carefully examine these.

According to the ToU, the user is in charge of the input and output, “including for making sure that it complies with all applicable laws.” What happens when someone’s copyright has been accidentally violated even though the Output is not covered by copyright protection? When questioned, ChatGPT admits that it was trained using a significant amount of text data. However, ChatGPT is not given credit for creating the Output in the first place. If permission has been gained for such data, it is unclear. This puts the user who asserts copyright over the Output in a challenging situation because the use might not even be considered to be fair dealing. In infringement suits before the Calcutta High Court (Saregama India Ltd. & Ors vs Alkesh Gupta & Ors on 1 October, 2013 GA No. 3009 of 2013 in CS No.347of 2013) & Delhi High Court (Tips Industries Ltd v Wynk Music Ltd and Anr., N.M(L) 197/2018 in C.S. I.P(L) 114/2018, 23 April 2019), where the respective Defendant websites/OTT platform allowed streaming of sound recordings protected under copyright law and claimed exception under Section 52(1)(a)(i) of the Act, 1957 (i.e. private or personal use), the Calcutta HC found the streaming of sound recordings (protected under copyright law) for a “fee or revenue may be from its sponsors or from third parties”, to be commercial exploitation, and the Delhi HC also arrived at a similar conclusion.

A premium edition dubbed ChatGPT Plus has been released by OpenAI. Similar to ChatGPT, but with faster response times and priority access during peak hours. The user’s input and output may be utilised to develop and improve OpenAI’s goods and services, according to the company’s website. Additionally, it appears that OpenAI has been given or received billions of dollars in investment. Therefore, it would seem that if OpenAI mistakenly infringes on someone’s copyright, the court could conclude that both OpenAI’s acts and the user’s conduct constitute copyright infringement on the basis of the commercial aspect associated with ChatGPT. 

 General Issues

One issue related to ChatGPT and copyright law is the potential for the text generated by ChatGPT to be considered a derivative work. A derivative work is a work that is based on pre-existing works and may be subject to the same copyright protections as those works. In the case of ChatGPT the text generated by the model may be based on copyrighted materials, which could result in the text being subject to legal protections and restrictions.

Another issue related to ChatGPT and copyright law is the potential for the model to be trained on copyrighted materials without permission from the copyright owner. If this occurs, it could constitute copyright infringement, which is the unauthorized use of copyrighted materials. However, there are exceptions to copyright law, such as fair use, which allows for limited use of copyrighted materials for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship or research.

In addition to these issues, there are also concerns related to the use and distribution of content generated by ChatGPT. For example if ChatGPT is used to generate text for commercial purposes, such as advertising or marketing there may be additional legal considerations related to copyright law. Similarly, if content generated by ChatGPT is distributed online or through other channels, there may be concerns related to the  ownership and control of that content.


AI is utterly disrupting human work, life and relationship and it will also changes the way we see ourselves and it will transform economies and societies on larger scale.

The introduction of text produced by AI has necessitated the consideration of copyright regulations. With the development of Chat Gpt, which can now produce content from scratch. As a result, the stakeholders will need to think about how new technology may affect copyright infringement. At the same time, there are many challenges that come with AI created text and copyright laws in India such as how to enforce these laws and how to protect creators from plagiarism. The use of AI by ChatGpt has led to copyright infringement accusations. Open AI states  that it will make endeavour to safeguard its users from infringing content and generate reward for original artists. However, the ambiguity surrounding the legal status of text produced by AI raises concerns about the legitimacy of this platform as well as the application of copyright laws in India. 

As we have seen, history and culture have influenced Indian copyright law. It has helped to promote innovation and safeguard a wide diversity of artistic creation. The law of copyright is dynamic and always changing. Given that technology creates new methods of doing things every day, it must be dynamic to stay up with the times. Additionally, copyright law must to be adaptable enough to take into account new technologies and procedures that don’t necessitate extensive judicial intervention. 

However, given the growing usage of AI and its derivatives, which present a risk of infringement, the legislation must now be amended with an eye towards modern changes in technology and society.  The user should also be aware of Open AI’s disclaimer, which states that it is not designed to give advise and that it may occasionally produce inaccurate or misleading information as well as offensive or biassed content. Before using the content, the user must use his or her own judgement.


Phone: +919841011111