Sam Altman, CEO of ChatGPT creator, OpenAI, has urged a US court to focus on regulating artificial intelligence (AI).

Altman spoke to a US Senate Committee on 17th May about the potential benefits of AI, as well as its risks to society. 

The generative AI market has boomed over the past few months, with new competitors and innovation joining the race constantly. 

Shortly after the Microsoft-backed OpenAI launched ChatGPT in November, 2022, Google scrambled to release its own version – Google Bard. 

Both applications are able to provide complex answers to a set of questions, often feeling like a real human. However, both have been found to provide inaccurate and potentially damaging information.  

Altman told the US Senate Committee that he thinks new AI companies should be licensed under a newly formed agency. 

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“For a very new technology we need a new framework,” Altman said.

Adding: “Certainly companies like ours bear a lot of responsibility for the tools that we put out in the world, but tool users do as well.”

AI’s impact on the economy 

Despite stating that AI could grow to be as big as “the printing press”, Altman noted that there was a myriad of risks that need to be monitored. 

The OpenAI CEO was praised by the committee for not shying away from the ethical issues surrounding his company’s technology. 

Altman admitted that there will certainly be an impact on jobs as the technology continues to grow. 

“There will be an impact on jobs,” the CEO said, “we try to be very clear about that.”

Altman also said he was “nervous” about the potential targeted spreading of misinformation during elections from applications like ChatGPT.

To address this, Altman suggested that independent auditors should be able to provide and take away licenses from AI companies.

Regulatory collaboration key to ethical AI

Industry experts have spoken out alongside Altman to address the importance of AI regulation as applications like ChatGPT increase in popularity.

“To fully embrace AI, we must understand that we are at a watershed moment, and we need to establish guardrails now,” Ivana Bartoletti, global privacy officer at tech consultancy agency Wipro, told Verdict.

“Regulation, binding agreements, and safe adoption rules are necessary to ensure responsible AI deployment and mitigate risks to our democratic viability,” she added.

According to Bartoletti, the only way to fully regulate the complex world of AI is through collaboration and a “multi-stockholder” approach.

“There needs to be emphasis on the need for a multi-stakeholder approach that involves governments, industry experts, academia, and civil society,” she said.

“Collaboration among these stakeholders is crucial to ensure that AI regulations are comprehensive, effective, and adaptable to the specific needs and challenges of different industries.”

GlobalData is the parent company of Verdict and its sister publications.