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Thomson Reuters is exploring an AI deal as more tech giants court news publishers

Thomson Reuters is exploring an AI deal as more tech giants court news publishers
Steve Hasker, CEO of Thomson Reuters, speaks in front of a red background wearing a blue suit.
Steve Hasker is the chief executive officer at Thomson Reuters.John Lamparski/Getty Images
  • Media and data company Thomson Reuters is considering licensing content to AI firms, Bloomberg reported.

  • Its top executive said the company is "open-minded" about working with large-language models.

  • Other publishers, including Business Insider owner Axel Springer, have struck AI deals.

News and information company Thomson Reuters is considering licensing some of its content to companies that build generative artificial-intelligence tools, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

The company's top executive said Thomson Reuters is "open-minded" about working with large-language-model, or LLM, providers.

"We've been in discussions with a number of those providers," the company's CEO Steve Hasker told Bloomberg.

Thomson Reuters offers products across various sectors, from its legal research tool, Westlaw, to its news and media division, Reuters. The company's vast data sets could be particularly useful for companies like OpenAI, Microsoft, or Google that are building generative AI features. Access to information from news sources may become increasingly important for AI firms if more users turn to chatbots over traditional search tools when looking for current information.

Some media companies, including Business Insider owner Axel Springer, have already signed licensing deals with AI providers. Axel Springer's partnership with OpenAI will incorporate content from the publisher's properties like BI, Politico, and Bild into ChatGPT results, along with story attribution and links to the original articles. Apple is also in discussions with some news publishers to gain access to content to bolster its generative AI efforts, per a New York Times report.

How LLMs are trained and what constitutes fair use of content has become a hot-button issue in the fast-growing AI industry. Authors, artists, and other rights holders have signed letters or launched lawsuits against some big AI firms, alleging they used copyrighted materials to train models without permission. Music industry lawyers are putting together playbooks to protect artists and labels from an onslaught of AI imitators. And, the New York Times filed a lawsuit in December against Microsoft and OpenAI, alleging "unlawful use of The Times's work to create artificial intelligence products that compete with it."

A spokesperson for Thomson Reuters did not provide additional comment to BI on Bloomberg's report by press time.

Read the original article on Business Insider