Home » What Are Some Potential Effects of ChatGPT on Intellectual Property?

What Are Some Potential Effects of ChatGPT on Intellectual Property?


The ownership rights of artificial intelligence (AI) and humans is a complex and evolving issue that involves both legal and ethical considerations. At the heart of the issue is the question of who owns the intellectual property created by AI. In some cases, the AI itself may be considered the creator of the intellectual property, while in other cases, it may be the human programmer or the company that owns the AI. One of the key challenges in determining ownership rights is the fact that AI is capable of learning and making decisions on its own, which can make it difficult to determine who is ultimately responsible for any outcomes that result from its actions.

ChatGPT vis-a-vis Ownership Rights

In works produced via ChatGPT, it is difficult to prove the owner of the content which lies underneath. When the work is conjointly produced by a human and AI joint, co-ownership can be granted in some jurisdictions. One would understand that the more human creativity that is added to a machine-generated text, the greater the likelihood that it can be registered. Who owns the rights in such a derivative would likely be dependent on various issues, including where the dataset for training the AI tool originated, who, if anyone, owns the training dataset (or its individual components), and the level of similarity between any particular work in the training set and the AI work. Currently, there is no fixed rule or precedent to determine the copyright owner.
In places like the U.S., Copyright Office will not register a work that was created by an autonomous artificial intelligence tool. Some may argue that the AI is merely a tool or instrument that is used by a human author to create the work, and therefore the human author should be considered the creator and owner of the work. Others may argue that the AI itself should be considered the creator and owner of the work, given its ability to generate original content without human intervention. Currently, it is quite difficult to say with certainty who the real owner is.

Licensing of AI Generated Work

Another issue is licensing. Chat GPT allows the legal and commercial use of matter being created by this tool. Provided one obtains a license or permission from the right holder. It shifts the responsibility to the user whether he needs a license from OpenAI for commercial use for the content he generates using ChatGPT. Such a license is required from the third party whose data is used by the chatbot to solve your queries. Without clear licensing laws, it is quite possible to claim damages. The commercial use of this app is currently free for all, but in the future perhaps, it may require specific terms

ChatGPT and Patents

From the perspective of patents, it is capable of assisting in patent drafting and prosecution. It acts as a tool for assistance and is incapable of being the sole proprietor. It is effective to speed up certain aspects of patents. ChatGPT can be trained to answer from the pre-existing database of patent applications. Drafting and reviewing applications are time-consuming but Chat GPT can help reduce the time required. Patent litigation requires reviewing several technical applications which is tiresome.

Chat GPT can generate summaries of such or analyses of technical documents, which could save time and resources for attorneys and technical experts. Patent licensing and transactions could be streamlined by this AI tool. It could be used to generate draft agreements or to assist in the negotiation process by generating alternative language or provisions. It will largely assist the patent attorney in almost all stages of the patent process but cannot replace the attorney.

ChatGPT currently is dependent on the existing database of information or prior art which is available to the public. However, patents are granted to only new and original inventions which have no similarity with such prior art. Tools trained on existing corpuses of work, like ChatGPT-3, are inherently incapable of producing anything inventive and original. So drafting the claims for an entirely new invention will not be possible for the ChatGPT. For this, you still need the assistance of qualified Patent Agents. ChatGPT is capable of producing summaries of the inventions and their description but not capable of producing new ideas on its own.


To address these issues, there have been calls for clearer legal frameworks to be established to define ownership rights for AI. Some experts have suggested that a new form of legal personhood could be created for AI, which would allow for greater clarity and consistency in how ownership rights are determined. Others have proposed a more collaborative approach to ownership, in which humans and AI work together to create intellectual property and share the profits and benefits that result from it.

Ultimately, the issue of ownership rights in AI will continue to be an important area of research and debate as the technology continues to evolve and become more integrated into our daily lives. As AI becomes increasingly sophisticated and capable of independent decision-making, it will be essential to establish clear guidelines and ethical frameworks to ensure that ownership rights are fairly and transparently defined.

The information available indicates that ChatGPT has made a revolution for AI-powered chatbots. It has presented great accuracy. Though in these nascent stages, ChatGPt will not replace lawyers. It is an effective assistance tool but in many ways incapable of taking up an independent role. ChatGPT or its progeny will be replacing professional advisors in the foreseeable future. It is far more likely that they may be deployed to make our lives easier.

Author: Mansi Goel, Trainee Associate at PA Legal.

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