Meta wants to use your Instagram posts to train its AI


If you’ve uploaded a lot of photos to Meta’s platforms like Facebook and Instagram, it seems that the company could be planning to use those images to train its AI. This is according to Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s CEO, who revealed during the company’s earnings call that these images could be used for AI training purposes.

“When people think about data, they typically think about the corpus that you might use to train a model up front. On Facebook and Instagram, there are hundreds of billions of publicly shared images and tens of billions of public videos, which we estimate is greater than the Common Crawl dataset and people share large numbers of public text posts in comments across our services as well.”

This raises several questions about privacy and also copyright. Since these photos are uploaded to a public space, does it mean that Meta can use it without your consent? Meta President of Global Affairs Nick Clegg already foresees potential legal issues and is anticipating a “fair amount of litigation”.

AI requires a lot of training in order for it to be effective. It needs to learn what things are in order to better identify it. Since Meta plans to use its AI for commercial purposes, it could run foul of Fair Use. It could be argued that since these photos aren’t used specifically to market a product, like taking a photo someone else made and printing it on a t-shirt and selling it, it could still be considered Fair Use. Either way, we suppose that’s something that the courts will have to decide.

Tyler Lee
A graphic novelist wannabe. Amateur chef. Mechanical keyboard enthusiast. Writer of tech with over a decade of experience. Juggles between using a Mac and Windows PC, switches between iOS and Android, believes in the best of both worlds.

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