Is it time to regulate AI?
The biggest emerging technology and regulatory issue in 2017 was artificial intelligence (AI), although Bitcoin, cybersecurity and fake news also made big splashes. But AI is now a key issue in regulatory and policy circles, with a multitude of reports, commentary and academic papers weighing in on the principal question: does AI need regulating at this stage in its development, or at least in the near future? The battle lines have been drawn up between those advocating regulation and those who say that any such moves are premature.
In the US, there are already moves to propose legislation. A bipartisan group of senators have put forward the “Future of AI Act” that would create a federal advisory committee to examine and wrestle with the economic opportunities and impacts that emerging AI technologies will have in many aspects of American life.1 The committee would be set up by the Department of Commerce, and would address policy on the workforce, privacy, innovation and “the development and application of unbiased AI”.