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🏠 A(I) Potentially Fatal Lawsuit

NYT v OpenAI

Gm. If any of you are in the market for a couch and live on an upper floor, let me offer you a piece of advice: pay for a moving service. I moved into my new apartment this week, and getting the sectional up was the worst 2 hours I’ve had in a long time. Just trust me on this one, you really don’t want to have a PIVOT moment.

🏠 AI

The NYT v OpenAI

The New York Times has the opportunity to become the ultimate villain of AI Twitter X.

The avenue of their heel turn?

A lawsuit that could drive a stake into the heart of OpenAI.

Nobody Wants A New Competitor

The Times has made it abundantly clear they don’t want AI companies to train models on their content.

They’ve also made it clear why they feel this way. AI chatbots have the potential to be a competitor by becoming the spot where people go for news. Thus, they don’t want their content being used to train their potential replacement.

The first step toward preventing this bleak reality was updating their terms of service to prohibit AI companies from training models on their content. The second step is suing OpenAI.

A Costly Lawsuit

If the Times proves that OpenAI copied their content illegally and wins, OpenAI would be in a massive pile of trouble:

  • They might be restricted to only training on explicitly authorized data.

  • They could face fines of up to $150,000 for each piece of infringed content. That’s a cost OpenAI can ill afford right now.

  • It opens the door to similar lawsuits.

Unfortunately for OpenAI, a win for the Times is well in the realm of possibilities. It doesn’t take a genius to see that ChatGPT could pry users away from the Times. And that lends the suit an air of legitimacy.

In any case, with an avalanche of copyright lawsuits being formed, social media sites going to great lengths to change their API pricing, and sites scrambling to block ChatGPT’s web crawler, it appears the days of AI startups freely training on whatever data they want are over.

The Bottom Line: If Congress can’t get things together quickly then AI copyright law will be decided by the courts, not the regulators.

🏠 TECH

A Rare Peek Behind SpaceX’s Curtain

SpaceX is the big dog in the yard for space companies, but it’s also private. As such, they aren’t obligated to share their finances with anyone. So they usually don’t.

But today’s our lucky day, as the good folks over at the Wall Street Journal obtained some of SpaceX’s financial documents. These documents constitute the first look into SpaceX’s finances in six years:

  • There were $5.2B in expenses in 2022, up from $3.3B in 2021.

  • Revenue was $4.6B in 2022, doubling the result from 2021.

  • This put the loss in 2022 at $559M, down from $969M in 2021.

  • The majority of spending in 2022 was on new equipment ($5.4B), employee salaries and spacecraft depreciation ($3.1B), and research and development ($1.3B), all of which was up from 2021.

  • Sorry crypto bros, but they wrote down the value of their bitcoin holdings by $373M last year and sold all of it.

You might be wondering how the hell a business keeps the light on losing so much money. The answer is simple: it takes in a lot of money from investors. $2B in 2022 to be precise.

And this patience from investors might be starting to pay off, as the company actually turned a small profit in Q1 this year.

With basically a monopoly on rocket launches, Starship on the way soon, and its internet service Starlink growing by the day, it’s easy to see why investors are so patient.

The Big Picture: SpaceX is roughly valued at $150B, and it still feels like it’s barely scratching the surface of its potential. That’s a venture-scale business.

🏃‍♀️ QUICKIES

What else is going on?

Stat: 3%: Bing’s share of the global search market, which has remained steady despite Microsoft beefing it up with AI.

Rabbit hole: Self-Driving Car Bets (Less Wrong)

🤑 FUNDING FRIDAY

If you want a boring list of startup raises, look away now. If you want the 3 coolest raises of the week, then you’ve come to the right place.

🎁 FINAL JEOPARDY!

This Final Jeopardy! question stumped every contestant. Can you get it right?

Category: 21st Century Thought

Clue: The title subject of a 2007 bestseller, it was discovered in Australia where today it’s a state emblem.

🛠️ FOUNDERS CORNER

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💉 DOPAMINE HIT

What in the world is he training for.

@officialshaquanparson

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