Expert: Biden’s AI Order Misses the Mark, Despite Some Good Intentions

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Experts in this rapidly evolving technology have mixed reactions to what President Biden called an “executive order” (EO) he signed.

The Biden AI (executive order) is focused on a number of key areas, including the submission of “testing data” for review by the federal government. This provision could be useful if it allows the federal government to examine ‘black box algorithms’ that could lead to a biased AI algorithm. Christopher Alexander, Chief Analytics Officer of Pioneer Development Group, stated.

Alexander continued, “Since the core algorithms are proprietary there is really no other way to provide commercial protections and oversight.” “At the very least, it must be a technocratic, bipartisan effort that leaves political ideology behind. Otherwise, the AI threat will only worsen.”

Alexander’s remarks come after Biden announced a long-anticipated Executive Order containing new AI regulations, hailing it the “most comprehensive actions ever taken to safeguard Americans from the possible risks of AI systems.”

The executive order requires AI developers to provide safety test results to the government. It also creates standards to monitor AI safety and to ensure its safety. Finally, it erects guardrails to protect Americans’ privacy at a time when AI technology is rapidly growing.

Biden, before signing the order and according to a report by The Associated Press, said: “AI is everywhere.” To realize the promise of AI, and to avoid the risks, we must govern this technology.

Jon Schweppe is the policy director at the American Principles Project. He said the concerns over AI that led to Biden’s Executive Order were “warranted”. He praised some of its details, but argued that it focused on the “wrong priorities.”

Schweppe stated that “direct government oversight of AI is important, particularly when it comes to scientific research and homeland safety.” But in the end, we don’t want government bureaucrats to micromanage all aspects of this issue. We shouldn’t have a Bureau of Artificial Intelligence investigating whether or not a company’s AI algorithms are sufficiently ‘woke.

Schweppe said that “private oversight” is important for the technology’s growth, and that AI developers must be held accountable.

Schweppe stated that “AI companies, their creators and Congress should be held accountable for all the AI they create. Congress should also create a private action giving citizens a day in court if AI harms them materially.” This fear of liability will lead to a self-correction of the market. We wouldn’t even need government-approved identification badges, because private companies are already going to great lengths to avoid being sued.

The order builds on the voluntary commitments made by some of the biggest technology companies that the president helped broker in the first half of this year. These firms will be required to share data with the government about AI safety.

Ziven Havens of the Bull Moose Project stated that Biden’s order was a “decent attempt at AI policy.”

Havens stated that a significant part of the EO is establishing expectations for guidelines and regulation for topics such as watermarks and workforce impact, national security and Havens. All of which are critical to the future of new technology.

Havens cautioned, however, that “the time it will take for this guidance to be developed” should still cause concern.

Havens stated that “falling behind in the AI race because of a slow, inefficient bureaucracy would be a total failure.”

Phil Siegel of the Center for Advanced Preparedness and Threat Response Simulation said Biden’s directive was “thorough” but questioned if it tried to “take on too many things.”

Siegel said that AI regulation has “four pillars,” which include protecting vulnerable populations, such as children and elderly people; developing laws “that take into account the scope” of AI; ensuring algorithms are fair through removing bias; and guaranteeing trust and safety for algorithms.

Siegel stated that “I’d give the EO a high grade on [pillars] 3 and 4 and a more incomplete mark on 1 and 2.” “Unfortunately, there’s only so much an EO can do. It is important that Congress work with the White House in order to turn some of these ideas into law.”

Our request for comment to the White House was not immediately responded to