They cannot be named inventors on US patents.
In recent weeks, Google’s artificial intelligence, allegedly becoming self-aware, has caused such a stir that the software engineer who brought the case to the public hired a lawyer for LaMDA, so that his former employer could not run trials on his without his consent. Google has ruled out the possibility of LaMDA awakening to self-awareness, and AI researchers have also dismissed Blake Lemoine’s claim in various terms.
Now to the case An irrelevant development Happened in the United States, according to a US court, artificial intelligence cannot be classified as patent inventors, because they are not natural people. The case started in 2019, researcher Stephen Thaler tried to copyright the image generated by the Creativity Machine algorithm at the patent office, but for the above reason, his request was denied. Then, in 2020, his patent application was halted in the same way, naming the DABUS system after its inventor.
Because of the latter, Thaler started litigation, the trial judge ruled in favor of the patent office in 2021, and now, in a new lawsuit initiated due to the plaintiff’s appeal, a higher court has upheld the ruling. According to Judge Leonard B. Stark who made the last decision, the relevant law clearly states that only a natural person can be named as the inventor of the patent, and the “metaphysical arguments” made by the plaintiff can be ignored.
The decision is not unique, the courts of Australia and the European Union have recently taken the same position, although in the Republic of South Africa they recently accepted a patent registered by DABUS for a food storage bin based on fractal geometry.
Thaler has not yet exhausted all his legal options in the United States, he intends to appeal the ruling again, according to his lawyer, previous judges have interpreted patent law narrowly, based on textual analysis.
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