Universal Music Group (UMG) is doubling down on its stance against artificial intelligence (AI) in music.
As AfroTech previously told you, earlier this month, the leading music company reportedly asked streaming services to block AI from having access to copyrighted content.
“We have a moral and commercial responsibility to our artists to work to prevent the unauthorized use of their music and to stop platforms from ingesting content that violates the rights of artists and other creators,” a UMG spokesperson shared in a statement to Financial Times. “We expect our platform partners will want to prevent their services from being used in ways that harm artists.”
Now, Universal Music Group has gotten involved in taking down a viral song made by AI.
Created by user Ghostwriter977, Entrepreneur reports the song hit 11 million views on TikTok while Axios reports it “was streamed 15 million times after being originally uploaded on the platform.” What’s more, a now-disabled tweet featuring the song raked in 20 million views.
However, UMG’s complaint has since gotten the song removed from Spotify and YouTube — where it had 600,000 plays and 275,000 views, respectively — plus Apple Music, Amazon, SoundCloud, Tidal, Deezer, and TikTok.
In the company’s complaint, it vocalized that “the training of generative AI using our artists’ music [represented] both a breach of our agreements and a violation of copyright law,” per the outlet.
What’s interesting is that the outlet pointed to “Heart On My Sleeve” as an issue of intellectual property. However, it said “it’s not really clear whether the label or Drake and The Weeknd have a claim under traditional copyright law, given that the song in question isn’t something the artists ever wrote or sang.”
The viral moment is one of the numerous instances where Drake’s vocals have been used in AI songs. After having his voice used on Ice Spice’s “Munch (Feelin’ U),” the Toronto rapper was outspoken about sharing his apparent frustration with the trend.
“This the final straw AI,” Drake wrote in an Instagram story, per Complex.