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Smart AI Regulation: Key for US Innovation & Leadership

Smart AI Regulation

Now, I’m a passionate advocate for the power of technology and innovation to drive economic growth, create jobs, and shape our future. As President and CEO of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), I strive to educate and inspire people to embrace the potential of technology to improve our lives. My New York Times bestselling book, Ninja Future: Secrets to Success in the New World of Innovation, shares my experience and insights into the world of technology and how it can shape our future but Smart AI Regulation is the key.

But they can still serve as a guide for how we develop and use AI responsibly. While the imagination of Isaac Asimov has yet to be fully realized, the promise of AI in the 21st century is still immense. Therefore, we must take his lead and create a set of regulations and guidelines to govern the use of AI to ensure that its potential is realized safely and ethically.

That’s why the industry should advocate for responsible rules for AI development. After all, the advances made in technology over the past century have shown us the power of progress, as well as how to avoid its potential pitfalls.

Humans have a long history of harnessing the power of fire, from keeping warm to extending food storage time. However, fire can also be destructive, with the recent Canadian wildfires being a sobering example of its potential for harm.

Similarly, while nuclear power was used to devastating effect in WWII in the form of atomic bombs, it is currently being used for beneficial purposes such as providing electricity to homes in France and powering aircraft carriers in the United States.

We are at a crucial juncture in the development of this powerful, intricate, and significant technology, and we cannot afford to fall behind other nations in its use.

Generative AI has the potential to revolutionize how we interact with animal species, providing us with unprecedented insight into their behavior and communication. AI will also help to improve human health in multiple ways, from discovering new and more effective drugs to diagnosing diseases faster and more accurately.

AI-driven technologies are also being used to provide personalized care to elderly individuals and increase security for homes. Moreover, AI has the potential to turbocharge the global economy, with a recent McKinsey study estimating that generative AI could generate a yearly economic gain of $4.4 trillion.

With all the potential of this amazing technology, can it also have negative impacts? Absolutely. We should be wary of the potential misuse of AI, such as deep fakes, political manipulation, and fraud targeting vulnerable groups.

At the same time, we can leverage AI to identify, intercept, and prevent malicious cyberattacks. These challenges are complex and may require creative solutions to address. We must continue to work on them.

To remain competitive, we must take a balanced approach to AI, recognizing both the potential of the technology and the potential for misuse. To that end, schools have already begun experimenting with oral exams to assess a student’s knowledge. By tackling these issues directly rather than avoiding them with an unenforceable moratorium on research, the U.S. can lead the way in responsible AI use.

The European Union is on the verge of passing a sweeping Artificial Intelligence Act that would require companies to obtain permission from the government before innovating with AI technologies. Such a measure would effectively limit AI innovation to only those companies with the financial resources and capacity to navigate the complex certification process, which includes considerations of privacy, intellectual property, and numerous social protection requirements.

A recent Stanford University study has revealed that the EU’s AI Bill could potentially hinder the development and usage of current large language models, such as OpenAI’s GPT-4 and Google’s Bard. In a similar move, Canada is also proposing a sweeping AI bill that could limit innovation. Even more worrying is the fact that China is rapidly advancing its AI capabilities through huge government backing, both for civil and military purposes.

And, as the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal showed us, we must also ensure that the data collected is secured and used responsibly. We must also ensure that AI efforts are based on a foundation of human rights. This means that technology must be designed, developed, and deployed in ways that are free from bias and discrimination, that respect and protect privacy, and that are conducted transparently.

AI should also be held to the same ethical standards that govern human behavior. Innovation is important, but it must be balanced with protections for people. In the end, the U.S. must recognize that the best way to remain competitive is to ensure that our technology is based on a foundation of human rights, transparency, and respect for the privacy of our citizens.

A national privacy law is essential for safeguarding consumer data and providing clarity for companies regarding how they can collect, use, and share data. Such a law would create transparency for users and help build trust in the digital economy. Additionally, guidelines and standards should be established for the responsible use of AI. Although I prefer less regulation, developing and deploying emerging technologies such as AI necessitates setting out clear rules.

Given the rapid advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) technology, legislators should focus on establishing guardrails and setting clear outcomes for the use of AI, rather than attempting to regulate specific technologies. These rules should also take into account the associated risks, focusing on restricting AI systems that could potentially infringe upon Americans’ fundamental rights or interfere with access to critical services. As our government works to determine what constitutes “good policy” in this space, industry stakeholders should have an active role in the process.

The Consumer Technology Association is taking a proactive stance in the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) by collaboratively working with industry and policymakers to create cooperative principles for its use. As we stand at this important juncture in the evolution of this powerful and intricate technology, we must ensure that the United States remains at the forefront of AI innovation.