/ The challenges of artificial intelligence on the Law

24 April, 2020

Artificial intelligence poses great challenges in the practice of law. Currently many countries and international organizations debate AI policies and it would seem the instruments that intellectual property contemplates today are not sufficient to protect them.

Macarena Gatica

Senior associate Alessandri


The term “artificial intelligence” (AI) was popularized in 1956 at a conference at Dartmouth College, when describing the aspects of learning, intelligence and the creation of machines which simulate these aspects. In recent years we have seen further AI development due to deep learning techniques, exponential growth in computing power or capacity, and the increased amount of available data.

Today there are many examples of AI that we use daily, such as online translators, virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa, consumption or preference predictions, facial recognition, fraud prevention models, among many others, which no one can deny are innovations.

AI presents a considerable challenge in the practice of law, and in the month of Intellectual Property we want to analyze how this branch of the law will protect this innovation.

Many countries and international organizations debate AI policies and discuss whether the current Intellectual Property resources are suitable to provide adequate protection. It is not an easy definition, as AI’s own characteristics make it difficult to define.

For example, in the case of patents of invention, there is the challenge of demonstrating the factors that led to a prediction, since, due to the nature of AI, the invention is modified based on the data already captured as well as newly acquired knowledge, making it different from the original creation.

Then, as applies to all protection instruments, there is the matter of authorship. Historically, intellectual creations that have been recognized as property have always been associated with the human intellect. How then will we grant protection to a machine, if it is not entitled to rights?

The foregoing would apparently lead us to conclude that the protection instruments currently established by the intellectual property regulations today do not allow these inventions to be recognized as property.

The contributions of AI as well as its encouragement for innovation is undeniable and we believe that its progress must not be hampered by the legal debate that has been generated. It is an opportunity to avoid over-regulation and encourage innovation, while respecting current legislation. It can be a great opportunity to increase human capacities by automating processes that allow humans to focus on more productive tasks. Today more than ever, we cannot waste or hinder an opportunity that allows a productive advantage.