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YouTube is investigating whether OpenAI used creators’ videos to train Sora. It also thinks its own AI products can do better.

YouTube is actively looking into whether OpenAI used creators’ content to train Sora, Google CEO Sundar Pichai says.

He joined The Verge editor-in-chief Nilay Patel on the latest episode of Patel’s podcast The Decoder, and said YouTube is “following up and trying to understand” recent reports alleging OpenAI scraped videos from its platform for its text-to-video generator product.

You’ve probably seen the mega-viral interview where OpenAI’s Chief Technology Officer Mira Murati pulled quite the memorable face and said she didn’t know if Sora had been trained on YouTube videos.

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“I’m actually not sure about that,” Murati told The Wall Street Journal. “You know, if they were publicly available to use, there might be data. But I’m not sure. I’m not confident about it.”

YouTube CEO Neal Mohan–who’s bullish when it comes to YouTube using AI, even as creators express concerns about what gen AI is doing to artists, writers, musicians, and many other creatives–said last month that if OpenAI did use YouTube videos, it would be a “clear violation” of the platform’s terms of service.

“From a creator’s perspective, when a creator uploads their hard work to our platform, they have certain expectations,” he told Business Insider. “One of those expectations is that the terms of service is going to be abided by.”

(Also worth noting: OpenAI is currently in even more hot water because it allegedly used Scarlett Johansson‘s voice for ChatGPT, despite her telling it not to. So, you know, it does not appear to have a stellar track record with respecting artists’ consent.)

Now, Pichai confirms YouTube is investigating–and also had to answer some tough questions from Patel about Google and YouTube’s push into AI and why they think their generative products are different from OpenAI’s.

“Look, be it website owners or content creators or artists, I can understand how emotional a transformation this is,” Pichai said. “Part of the reason you saw, even through Google I/O when we were working on products like music generation, we have really taken an approach by which we are working first to make tools for artists. We haven’t put a general-purpose tool out there for anyone to create songs. The way we have taken that approach in many of these cases is to put the creator community as much at the center of it as possible. We’ve long done that with YouTube. Through it all, we are trying to figure out what the right ways to approach this.”

Patel pushed Pichai to differentiate how Google/YouTube’s approach to AI is different from products like ChatGPT and Midjourney, where people “put work on the internet and the big companies are coming, taking it for free, and then making products that they are charging $20 a month for or that will lift their creative work and remix it for other people,” Patel said.

He asked Pichai how Google and YouTube plan to bring value back to creators with its own offerings.

“The whole reason we’ve been successful on platforms like YouTube is we have worked hard to answer this question,” Pichai said. “You’ll continue to see us dig deep about how to do this well. […] Anytime you’re running a platform, it’s the basis on which you can build a sustainable long-term platform. Through this AI moment, over time, there’ll be players who will do better by the content creators that support their platforms, and whoever does it better will emerge as the winner.”

Patel’s full interview is definitely worth checking out. You can listen or read here.

Originally Appeared Here

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