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The EU’s AI regulations sparked a letter signed by 160 tech execs


The EU’s AI regulations sparked a letter signed by 160 tech execs

As the EU works on its upcoming AI bill, executives from 160 companies in the industry drafted an open letter on the implications of too-strict regulations.

An open letter to lawmakers in the European Union was issued by more than 160 executives from tech companies around the world urging careful consideration of artificial intelligence (AI) regulations not to stunt the industry or markets.

On June 30, executives from companies such as Renault, Meta, Spanish telecom company Cellnex, and German investment bank Berenberg, pointed to the proposed EU Artificial Intelligence Act, saying it potentially risks the region’s competitiveness and innovation.

More specifically, the letter warned that rules proposed by the EU would cause heavy regulation of generative AI tools, and incur both liability risks and high compliance costs for the companies developing the technology.

On June 14, two weeks prior to the letter, the European Parliament passed the initial EU AI Act, which includes legislation that would force tool like ChatGPT to disclose all AI-generated content and other measures against illegal content.

Additionally, as they stand now, the laws intend to prohibit using certain AI services and products. Total bans were placed on technologies such as the public use of biometric surveillance, social scoring systems, predictive policing, so-called “emotion recognition” and untargeted facial recognition systems.

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Before the bill actually becoming law, individual negotiations among parliament members will take place to finalize details of the EU AI Act. This recent letter comes as tech companies still have the time to petition lawmakers for more lenient measures.

The day before the letter was issued, the president of Microsoft visited Europe to speak with regulators on how to best regulate AI.

In May, Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, also spoke with European regulators in Brussels. He warned about the potential negative effects of over-regulation on the AI industry.

The EU’s tech chief is on record pushing for the bloc and the United States to come together to create a voluntary “AI code of conduct” to be set in place while lawmakers finalize more permanent measures.

In March, another open letter was issued by over 2,600 tech industry leaders and researchers, including Elon Musk. However, it called for a temporary pause on any further development of AI and asked for regulations.

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