U.S. President Signs Artificial Intelligence Governance Executive Order
In an unprecedented move on 30/10/23 the White House unveiled a comprehensive executive order focused on the potential and perils of artificial intelligence (AI).
This action underscores a global urgency to navigate the rapid advancements and governance in AI technology.
Senior White House representatives tout this as one of the most significant governmental steps in the AI realm. Their stance is clear: With AI evolving at breakneck speeds, both the government and private sectors need to act swiftly, even outpacing the technology itself. As articulated by White House Chief of Staff Jeff Zients, "We have to be ahead of the curve, constantly proactive, and seize every opportunity to shape AI's trajectory."
Set to be presented by President Joe Biden, the order's vast reach mandates AI system developers to disclose safety test outcomes to federal agencies prior to public launches. Moreover, AI models with potential national, economic, or health threats will necessitate federal notifications under the Defense Production Act.
In a bid to bolster the nation's AI prowess, the order will also facilitate the entry and stay of AI experts in the US. Additionally, it sets in motion protocols to prevent AI misuse in producing hazardous bio-materials and offers guidelines to counter potential job losses due to AI.
Addressing the burgeoning concern of AI-driven fraud, the directive tasks the Commerce Department with creating strategies to watermark AI-generated content. It also elucidates the government's AI stance, emphasizing both safety standards and potential enhancements in agency efficiencies.
This initiative builds upon voluntary pledges from tech giants like Microsoft and Google earlier this year, promoting external audits of AI systems pre-release and clear marking of AI-created content. Moreover, recalling last year's "AI Bill of Rights", the White House continues its mission to safeguard consumers in the AI space.
With generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT, becoming household names, their implications have been a focal point for consumers, businesses, and policymakers alike. After discussions with tech moguls in July, President Biden emphasized the need for a balanced perspective on AI's potential benefits and challenges.
Recently, the president's close-knit team, including Zients and other key advisers, convened to finalize the executive order. Their collective vision? To demystify AI for the masses, highlighting its capabilities, concerns, and the government's proactive measures.
In preparation for this order, President Biden engaged with global leaders, academics, tech heads, and other stakeholders. His extensive consultations encompassed the positive potential of AI in sectors like health care and weather forecasting, as well as its adverse impacts, especially on social platforms.
Safety remains paramount for the president, as evident from his concerns over voice cloning scams and national security implications. The executive order's timing is noteworthy, with Vice President Kamala Harris set to attend an AI summit in the UK and ongoing international efforts to craft a universal AI code of conduct.
Domestically, Congressional leaders are actively deliberating on AI-focused legislation, with initiatives like the "AI Insight Forums" spearheaded by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. As Reed emphasized, the administration's commitment is unwavering: "We are matching AI's pace, ensuring its promise is realized while mitigating its risks."
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