Tennessee Shield Artists from AI with New ELVIS Act


  • Tennessee has set a precedent by introducing the ELVIS Act to shield artists from AI voice replication. 
  • Governor Bill Lee’s signing is a first in the nation for such protective legislation. 
  • The act’s effectiveness remains a key focus for both the music industry and lawmakers.

Tennessee has become the first state in the nation to set up a legal framework designed to shield artists from the perils of artificial intelligence (AI). Governor Bill Lee signed the Ensuring Likeness, Voice, and Image Security Act (ELVIS Act) into law, placing the state at the forefront of the battle to protect musicians and their unique voices from AI replication.

Protecting artistic integrity

The ELVIS Act emerges as a response to growing concerns within the music industry regarding AI’s capability to mimic artists’ voices and create new works without consent. This law aims to safeguard the rights of artists, ensuring their voices cannot be used without explicit permission. “AI brings many benefits, but it also poses risks, especially in the wrong hands,” stated Governor Lee. He stressed the importance of preserving the individuality and intellectual property of artists, which AI threatens to undermine. By introducing a state civil action, Tennessee offers artists a tool to fight unauthorized use of their voices, marking a significant step in protecting their work and identity.

Obstacles and future steps

The effectiveness of the ELVIS Act in an environment where AI technology advances rapidly remains to be seen. The law’s implementation highlights Tennessee’s commitment to its artists and their rights, building on the state’s history of robust image and likeness protections since 1984. As AI technology continues to advance, the music industry and lawmakers alike face the obstacle of keeping regulations up to speed with innovation.

This legislative action also reflects broader national and international conversations about how to balance between the advancement of technology and the defense of individual and intellectual rights. Tennessee starts an important dialogue on the nexus of technology, art, and law with the ELVIS Act, a model that other states and nations might emulate.

As the dialogue continues, the impact of Tennessee’s ELVIS Act will be closely watched by artists, industry professionals, and lawmakers across the United States. Its success or limitations will likely inform future efforts to ensure that AI technology serves to enhance, not undermine, the creative industries it intersects with.

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Randa Moses

Randa is a passionate blockchain consultant and researcher. Deeply engrossed with the transformative power of blockchain, she weaves data into fascinating true-to-life next generation businesses. Guided by a steadfast commitment to research and continual learning, she keeps herself updated with the latest trends and advancements in the marriage between blockchain and artificial intelligence spheres.

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