How Creators Can Own Their Digital Likeness 🤖

Metaphysic explains the importance of protecting performance data

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Creatives Move to Protect Their AI Likeness Rights

Metaphysic has deepfaked the likenesses of Tom Cruise, Elvis Presley, and Simon Cowell. Now, they’re helping creators protect their likeness / Metaphysic

A song featuring AI-generated versions of Drake and The Weeknd’s voices went viral on TikTok and YouTube earlier this year, leading many in creative industries to ask: How can creators, artists, and actors control the use of their personal likenesses as artificial intelligence tools become more and more popular?

The generative AI firm Metaphysic believes that the solution isn’t to ignore new technology. Rather, the company is helping talent secure personal data, file to copyright their likenesses, and license their portfolio to third parties in order to keep up with AI innovation.

The case for data ownership: Because “in the next 10 years, the content we consume will be 90% AI-generated,” Metaphysic chief marketing officer Erika Coppel told us, citing a claim from the company’s CEO. Metaphysic is creating tools for creators of all shapes and sizes to own their data—data which AI models are being trained on. 

Context: Metaphysic first gained recognition for creating the deepfake tech behind its cofounder Miles Fisher’s popular @DeepTomCruise TikTok account, as well as a viral America’s Got Talent performance.

The company’s Metaphysic Pro subscription, which launched in September, allows talent to build a portfolio of digital assets (think face and voice data) and transfer files “very securely…and fast” to the Metaphysic platform, according to product manager Pawel Blazejewski.

Talent can then monetize their likeness by giving authorized partners access to their data on a contract basis without turning over ownership.

Zoom out: Metaphysic isn’t alone in licensing AI likenesses—YouTube recently announced a tool that lets Shorts creators make songs using top artists’ voices (with the artists’ approval).

What do you think: Is owning your likeness in an increasingly AI-enabled world important to you as a creator?

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The Latest Creator to Jump into Consumer Beverages

Ashley Alexander, also known as “ur mom ashley”, shares the ins-and-outs of starting her matcha business, including its farm in Shizuoka, Japan / ur mom ashley

Lifestyle creator and long-time matcha enthusiast Ashley Alexander recently revealed she’s starting her own matcha brand. Alexander plans to have the finished product ready for purchase next year.

“A lot of matcha companies that are really popular nowadays are owned by white male CEOs,” Alexander told us. “Given that it’s really from Asian culture, it will be cool to tell a story of an Asian-American woman building her own business.”

Rewind: Over the last year, Alexander has shown bits and pieces of the company buildout—from sampling matcha varieties to traveling to Japan—on Instagram and YouTube. 

The creator POV: Community will be key. Alexander plans to continue documenting the business-building journey on YouTube. Her Matcha Mob community, where fans enter their email and phone number to get text updates, videos, and polls, will get a say on everything from brand name and identity to matcha flavor profiles.

“I really wanted my viewers to be able to see me build a business from behind the scenes all the way up until launch,” Alexander said. “I thought the best way to do that was in real-time.” 

Big picture: While the balance between making content and running a consumer business can be difficult to navigate, Alexander’s existing matcha content makes it possible to grow her content and newfound business in tandem. 

“There are some YouTubers that have the end game of starting a [separate] business, but I love YouTube so much. That’s something I'll never be able to give up,” Alexander said. “I can see it being a hard balance with the business but if anything, it’s the best way of marketing my matcha and a chance to experiment with building a business.”

Sponsored by Spotter

Spotter Has Paid $850 Million to Creators

How? Through catalog licensing deals.

Creators like MrBeast, DudePerfect, and Airrack have reinvested capital they’ve received from Spotter back into their businesses. For example, MrBeast leveraged his partnership to fund the translation of his videos into 14 different languages.

But capital isn’t the only way Spotter is accelerating creators' careers. They’re also doubling down with access to tools and knowledge like:

  • Spotter Labs, a suite of generative AI tools helping creators brainstorm better ideas. One of its tools (called Title Exploder) has become a go-to creative partner for Colin and Samir.

  • Spotter Summit, an annual gathering of top creators and influential industry experts with the goal of making creators better. In 2023, the event included workshops and talks from leaders in AI and storytelling.

Spotter is committed to supporting the growth of creators just like you.

Why This Tech Creator Sued a Billion-Dollar Phone Case Giant

Zack Nelson, also known as “JerryRigEverything,” sues electronic case company Casetify for seemingly stealing his original product designs / JerryRigEverything

Tech creator Zack “JerryRigEverything” Nelson is suing popular phone case seller Casetify over allegations the company stole his original product designs, he announced Thursday.

The backstory: Nelson partnered with dbrand, an electronics accessory company, to launch his bestselling “Teardown” phone case series in 2019.

So what’d Casetify do? According to Nelson, they’ve sold “Teardown” rip-offs that directly copy his products. He realized this after discovering several easter eggs (such as “Glass is Glass and Glass Breaks,” a unique phrase Nelson often uses in his videos) also hidden in Casetify’s designs. 

Looking ahead: Though Casetify said that it removed the designs from its store following Nelson’s video, he promised to keep his viewers updated on the lawsuit.

👀 Creator Moves

  • Tech creator Manoj Saru is hiring a full-time video editor who uses Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro.

  • MrBeast is hiring a writer to research YouTube trends and generate ideas for the creative team.

  • Starbucks is hiring a videographer to execute innovative social media creative through video.

🔥 Press Worthy

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