In October 2022, the artist Kris Kashtanova obtained protection for her comic Zarya of the Dawn, which has a part written by her, and graphics made by artificial intelligence. After the decision of the US Copyright Office, it was discovered through social networks that the information provided by the author about the origin of the images in the comic was incomplete, since she never specified that the images were not entirely of her authorship, and that she had used an assistance of an application for that purpose.
Consequently, the Office reversed its decision, arguing that copyrightable works are only the product of human creation. Kashtanova’s lawyer argued that the work was protectable, since Midjourney was simply a tool to assist in the creation of the work, and the registration must respond to the creative selection, coordination and organization between the images and the text written by the author.
The decision marks an important direction for the creation of new artworks, since artists will not be able to use any artificial intelligence tool that does not constitute a significant human contribution and where the barriers of respect to third party copyrights are not clearly delimited. The protection of rights over Zarya of the Dawn was re-delimited to protect only the written element of the comic, i.e. the dialogues, while the images, which were created by artificial intelligence, remained in the public domain.