Musk v. Microsoft

Elon Musk, CEO of Twitter, has threatened to sue Microsoft, accusing the tech giant of using Twitter data to train its AI models without permission. Musk tweeted, “They trained illegally using Twitter data. Lawsuit time,” but he offered no further details or evidence. Microsoft declined to comment on the matter.

What’s this all about? A few months back, Twitter announced that it would begin charging a minimum of $42,000 per month to users of its API. In response, Microsoft announced that its advertising platform would no longer support Twitter starting on April 25, and ad buyers wouldn’t be able to access their Twitter accounts through Microsoft’s social management tool. As far anyone can tell, this is just another Elon temper tantrum, but no lawsuit has yet been filed.

Elon brings up an interesting question, though: is Twitter’s database public, published, copyrighted, owned, or otherwise protected by any laws of any kind? When you tweet something, it is clearly meant for the general public to see. If the content belongs to anyone, it belongs to you… or does it?

We are going to have to completely rethink copyright protection in the age of large language models. If you want to learn more about why, please check out our free online course, Generative AI for Executives.

Author’s note: This is not a sponsored post. I am the author of this article and it expresses my own opinions. I am not, nor is my company, receiving compensation for it.

About Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the Professor of Advanced Media in Residence at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and CEO of The Palmer Group, a consulting practice that helps Fortune 500 companies with technology, media and marketing. Named LinkedIn’s “Top Voice in Technology,” he covers tech and business for Good Day New York, is a regular commentator on CNN and writes a popular daily business blog. He's a bestselling author, and the creator of the popular, free online course, Generative AI for Execs. Follow @shellypalmer or visit



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