- The European Commission and Google are working to develop a voluntary AI pact before legislation comes into effect.
- This initiative aims to anticipate and prepare for AI's potential societal and business impacts.
- EU Industry chief Thierry Breton has urged EU countries and lawmakers to finalize the proposed AI rules before the end of the year.
In a remarkable leap towards defining the ever-changing landscape of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Google and the European Commission have announced plans to lay out a cooperative agreement for the emerging technology.
This decision comes in light of the growing urgency for global oversight on AI’s societal and business implications.
EU industry chief, Thierry Breton, took the initiative, meeting with Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google and Alphabet, its parent company, to chart a path for an AI pact. This meeting sought to draw the blueprint for AI governance even before the regulatory frameworks become legally binding.
Co-creation of AI pact: A voluntary undertaking
Breton expressed the urgency of proactive measures, stating that there was no time to be complacent until AI regulation was actually enforceable.
“We agreed on the necessity of working together with all AI developers to already develop an AI pact on a voluntary basis ahead of the legal deadline,” he shared in an official statement.
This move to align Google and other AI developers with the impending legal framework signals the willingness of these tech giants to play an active role in shaping AI’s future.
The EU industry chief also made a plea to EU countries and lawmakers to fast-track the details of the Commission’s proposed AI rules before the year concludes. These two factions are yet to commence negotiations to resolve their differences.
Harnessing the power of AI without compromising innovation
With AI’s rapid evolution and its potential to revolutionize society and business structures, there is mounting concern about ensuring adequate oversight without inhibiting technological advancement.
Governments worldwide are grappling with this challenge, striving to strike a balance between exploiting AI’s benefits and mitigating potential pitfalls.
Echoing Breton’s sentiment, EU Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager, who also met Pichai, emphasized the need for swift collective action. “AI technology evolves at extreme speed. So we need a voluntary agreement on universal rules for AI now,” she highlighted.
Looking at fostering international cooperation, the European Union and the United States are also planning to intensify their collaborative efforts on AI to set minimum standards before relevant legislation comes into effect.
Ensuring responsible AI use: A global concern
Addressing the darker side of AI, Commission Vice President Vera Jourova brought up the issue of disinformation and pro-Kremlin war propaganda spread through Google’s products and services. She expressed concern about the potential risks this poses to EU and national elections.
In response, Pichai pledged to investigate the challenges faced by independent Russian media in monetizing their content on YouTube, Google’s video-sharing platform.
This ongoing dialogue between tech conglomerates like Google and major political entities marks a defining moment in AI’s history.
By pursuing an AI pact prior to the establishment of official laws, these global leaders are actively shaping the technology’s trajectory, helping ensure that AI evolves in a way that benefits society while maintaining the integrity of information.