The Impact of Generative AI Lawsuits on Internet Freedom and Browser Dynamics

Seth Underwood
3 min readApr 11, 2024
Image- By jakkapan Sourced and Licensed by Author through Adobe Stock

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First, I’m not a lawyer. Second, the legal realities of Generative AI are involving concept. While in a recent piece I mentioned the idea that these were like Napster, they are not in reality.

The issues with Generative AI and copyrights extend more into areas like what Google uses to justify its browser with fair use arguments.

Unlike the Napster lawsuit that took only a couple of years to settle from Napster’s founding in 1999. The reality is the generative AI lawsuits may be somewhere in the order of five to ten years, with bits and pieces being settled individually.

One strange and outcome I explored with Google’s Gemini was what would happen if these generative AI lawsuits were too narrow the fair use arguments regarding how information is captured for AI training from the internet.

It noted that the knock-on effects to browsers could be significant, in that currently groups like Google currently enjoy the freedom to copy webpages that may be copyrighted to show them where that would end.

You either pay Google for copyrighted material or they partner with sites like Medium for content. Or with the extreme end, Medium could be bought out by Google to be that new blog content and the site could be transformed into something akin to YouTube with ads (and creators already complain about the payments they get- which is why many take sponsors).

This could lead to a new internet where browsers restrict access to specific websites. This makes all the browsers more like Facebook in that it’s a user platform.

This could spark a new information war, turning the internet into a curated group of specific sites.

It may cause certain browsers to become echo chambers, resulting in more control over information and increased social polarization.

We could also see new web hosting in nations where these laws don’t apply and browsers that can access those locations. But if such places are China and/or Russia, this could bring about a whole new set of problems.

It would be the end of the internet as an open marketplace of ideas, and a return to ideas curated and vetted by those in control.

You can buy me a new match-box car-

Sorry I don’t drink coffee… it interferes with my medications.



Seth Underwood

54+ autistic, undiagnosed dyslexic, sufferer of chronic migraines, writer of dark science fiction, player of video games and Mike Pondsmith Fan. Race- Human.