Robots and IP: Protecting Faces, Expressions and Vocalizations

IP Watchdog

Preventing others from copying your robot’s AI-driven face, expressions and vocalizations requires a comprehensive intellectual property strategy. That’s one of the takeaways from a pending dispute between robot makers as described in Digital Dream Labs, LLC v. Living Technology (Shenzhen) Co. (pending in the Western District of Pennsylvania). The case involves plaintiff DDL, which owns registered copyrights in desktop humanoid-vehicle hybrid robots called COZMO and VECTOR, and defendant Living.AI, whose headphone-wearing, skateboard riding, humanoid robot called EMO is alleged by DDL to infringe its copyrights. Both companies reportedly deployed AI software on their robots that selects graphical animations and sounds to output based on the robot’s reactions with its environment and user.

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“Robots and IP: Protecting Faces, Expressions and Vocalizations,” by Brian Wm. Higgins was published in IP Watchdog on April 12, 2022. Reprinted with permission.