AI Chatbot Service ‘Agent Gold’ Accused of Copying Creators’ Image and Likeness

agent gold chatbot ai mrbeast marques brownlee
estar 2020/Shutterstock Hub Design/Shutterstock Rosanna Pansino/YouTube MrBeast/YouTube @MKBHD/X Remix by Caterina Cox

The rise in artificial intelligence has led to a lot of innovation. But not all these innovations are a good thing. We’ve already seen how AI can steal artwork and even generate disturbing ‘deep fake’ pornography. But a new website, Agent Gold, is an especially brazen invention.

As discovered by creator Marques Brownlee on Feb. 14, this website claims to give you the ability to ‘Chat with a YouTuber.’ It features AI bots using the images and likenesses of numerous content creators, including Brownlee, MrBeast, Mark Rober, Rosanna Pansino, and Joe Rogan.

But from what Brownlee is saying, it appears Agent Gold AI did not obtain permission to imitate these creators.

“It’s so incredibly bad,” Brownlee wrote on a thread that accumulated over 1.7 million views. “Just spews lies. They also never got permission to use my likeness, and I suspect several others on this list were never even asked.”

Other creators, like Mark Rober and Coffeezilla, tweeted out their distaste for the service.

Notably, since these tweets went viral, Agent Gold seems to have made some tweaks to its site. Its ‘Chat with a YouTuber’ feature changed to ‘Chat with a YouTuber superfan.’

In a puzzling public statement addressed to the creators who spoke out, the organization claims that it was “never [its] intention” to misrepresent anyone’s likeness.

“Our goal was to make it easier for fans to learn from you in the same way folks search for content in your videos right now,” the statement reads. “We were striving to create a symbiotic relationship where fans gain more insight from your content, and for you to see a tangible increase in audience reach. We recognize the importance of upholding creator rights, and it was never our intention to misrepresent or misuse your likeness. We’re going to get this right.”

Name, image, and likeness (“NIL”) rights are largely unregulated in the United States. So, it’s unclear if the creators involved will be able to take any legal action against Agent Gold. Currently, there are no federal laws protecting NIL rights. Influencers instead have to contend with varying state-level laws.

“The mix of AI and the identities of real people is a legal minefield right now, exacerbated by a proliferation of startups offering quick and easy methods of creating deepfakes,” lawyer Franklin Graves told Passionfruit. “Creators may be in a position to take advantage of the existing right of publicity laws, but it will depend upon where they live and the state laws that they can utilize.”

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