Jay-Z and Roc Nation may have just made history. For the first time ever, a deepfake audio simulating Jay-Z's voice has been removed from YouTube off of a copyright claim. 


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YouTube channel Vocal Synthesis focuses on A.I. generated speech for the use of audio deepfakes. Andy Baio, the founder of XOXO Festival, explained the scenario and mentioned that Roc Nation LLC filed a copyright claim against Vocal Synthesis to remove videos with deepfake audio of Jay-Z from their channel. 

"Over the weekend, for the first time, the anonymous creator of Vocal Synthesis received a copyright claim on YouTube, taking two of his videos offline with deepfaked audio of Jay-Z reciting the “To Be or Not To Be” soliloquy from Hamlet and Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire.”

According to the creator, the copyright claims were filed by Roc Nation LLC with an unusual reason for removal: “This content unlawfully uses an AI to impersonate our client’s voice.”

The deepfake videos include a fake Jay-Z reading the Book Of Genesis and the Navy Seal copypasta meme. Though VS did get the memo from Roc Nation that said "this content unlawfully uses an AI to impersonate our client’s voice," a representative from YouTube explained why they re-instated it.

"After reviewing the DMCA takedown requests for the videos in question, we determined that they were incomplete,” a Google spokesperson tells The Verge. “Pending additional information from the claimant, we have temporarily reinstated the videos.”

The videos themselves clearly state that the vocals are generated through A.I. but this also might mark the first time any celebrity has filed a copyright claim over deepfake audio. 

[Via]