Automattic, the parent company of sites such as WordPress and Tumblr, is in talks to sell content from its platforms to AI companies such as MidJourney and OpenAI. This is reported by Gizmodo with a reference to 404 Media.

The content is planned to be used for educational purposes. Although the details of the agreement are still unclear, Automattic is trying to assure users that they can withdraw from the initiative at any time.

According to media reports, there is a conflict within Automattic on this topic. It is allegedly related to the fact that some of the content planned to be sold by AI companies contained private data that the company should not have stored. The training data set, according to the publication, even included advertising content that does not belong to Automattic.

Amid the conflict at Automattic, one of the product managers even started deleting his own photos from Tumblr to make sure they would not be used to train AI.

At the same time, Automattic is planning to introduce a new setting in the near future that will allow users to opt out of AI training. Although it is unclear whether it will be enabled or disabled by default for most users.

The company explains this step by its intention to give users more control over the content they create.

“At Automattic, we have always believed in a free and open internet and individual choice. Like other tech companies, we are closely monitoring these developments, including how to work with artificial intelligence companies while respecting the wishes of our users,” the company said in a statement.

But Automattic’s information also says that “there is no law requiring search engines to follow these wishes.” Therefore, it is believed that the company is simply following industry best practices to allow users to decide whether they want their content to be used for AI training.

Recently, it was reported that Reddit signed an agreement that allows the use of user content on the platform to train an AI model. At first, the media reported that it was a deal with an unnamed company. But later it was reported that it was an agreement with Google.