In a recent appearance before a U.S. Senate judiciary subcommittee, Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, voiced his conviction that the regulation of artificial intelligence by the government is essential due to the possible risks this technology poses to mankind.
Despite prevailing political disagreements that have been obstructing the passage of internet regulation legislation, Altman called upon Congress to establish new rules applicable to large tech corporations. He cited the grave consequences that could result if AI technology goes wrong and asserted OpenAI’s founding belief that while AI could vastly enhance various aspects of our lives, it also introduces considerable risks.
Altman elaborated on his concerns about the potential issues of disinformation, job security, and other threats. He noted the necessity for regulatory intervention from governments to mitigate the risks associated with increasingly powerful AI models. Altman also proposed the creation of a US or international agency with the power to issue licenses for the most powerful AI systems and to enforce compliance with safety standards.
OpenAI, Altman’s San Francisco-based startup, gained significant public recognition following the release of ChatGPT, a free chatbot tool that provides impressively human-like responses. Despite its initial reception, concerns have grown about the potential misuse of ChatGPT and other “generative AI” tools, such as enabling students to cheat on assignments, disseminating misleading information, infringing copyright protections, and disrupting certain job sectors.