Since artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot ChatGPT was made available for public use in November 2022, its parent company OpenAI has been battling regulators around the world.
This week, the CEO of the company, Sam Altman, spoke to officials in Brussels about their upcoming EU AI Act for which he has “many concerns.”
Altman particularly highlighted that the regulations plan to include general-purpose AI technology, such as OpenAI’s GPT-4. He said the “details matter” with regard to such legislation and gave a warning about the future of the company’s activities in Europe if too-restrictive regulation comes into action:
“We will try to comply, but if we can’t comply we will cease operating.”
Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google, also visited European capitals this week to speak to regulators as they create “guardrails” for AI regulation. According to representatives at the meetings, Pichai urged for regulations that don't hinder innovation.
The EU AI Act, which is projected to be finalized next year, will be one of the world’s premiere regulation packages for AI technologies.
Initially, the legislation was created to deal with specific, high-risk use cases of AI. However, after the boom in popularity and accessibility, extra rules were included, such as “foundation models” like ChatGPT being responsible for the usage of their applications even if they have no control.
Additionally, companies will have to publicize summaries of copyrighted materials used to train AI, and the technology will be subject to categorization based on the risk they pose to society, to be determined by policymakers.
While companies from within the industry agree that some regulation is necessary, executives have been vocal about over-regulation.
A week prior to his meetings with European leaders, Altman testified before the United States Congress in what was dubbed a “historic” hearing. The OpenAI CEO and other leaders in the industry made their case to U.S. officials regarding government regulation of the technology.