Saudi Press

Saudi Arabia and the world
Monday, Apr 15, 2024

MEPs push to bring chatbots in line with EU's fundamental rights

MEPs push to bring chatbots in line with EU's fundamental rights

MEPs want chatbots to include safeguards that will prevent them from generating content that is illegal under EU law.
Members of the European Parliament overwhelmingly voted on Thursday morning to advance a draft regulation to ensure the "ethical development" of Artificial Intelligence (AI), a rapidly evolving technology that has raised concerns about disinformation, privacy, surveillance, discrimination, plagiarism, impersonation and even the future of democracy.

With the new EU-wide rules, lawmakers want to guarantee AI systems are "overseen by people, are safe, transparent, traceable, non-discriminatory and environmentally friendly," said a press release.

MEPs "also want to have a uniform definition for AI designed to be technology-neutral, so that it can apply to the AI systems of today and tomorrow."

The vote, which took place in a joint session of the internal market and civil liberties committees, added new provisions to the original text proposed by the European Commission, most notably fresh obligations on so-called generative foundation models, like ChatGPT, the chatbot developed by OpenAI that has revolutionised the tech industry since its launch in late November.

Foundation models are those trained with vast troves of data, such as text, images, music, speech and code, with the goal of fulfilling a wide and ever-changing set of tasks, rather than having a specific, unmodifiable purpose. Chatbots like OpenAI's GPT and Google's BERT are some of the early examples of this technology, which is expected to further evolve in the coming years.

While investors have jumped fast on chatbots, critics have decried their unchecked development, raising the alarm about bias, hate speech, fake news, state propaganda, IP violations, labour redundancies, cyberattacks and the increasingly blurred line between human and artificial.

Mindful of the growing concerns, lawmakers have added amendments to ensure chatbots are transparent, do not produce content that is illegal under EU law, comply with copyright rules and respect fundamental rights like freedom of expression.

"Generative foundation models should ensure transparency about the fact the content is generated by an AI system, not by humans," the new text reads.

MEPs also pushed to broaden the list of "intrusive and discriminatory" AI applications that should be strictly banned across EU territory. The expanded list covers real-time biometric identification in public spaces, predictive policing systems, and emotion recognition in law enforcement and workplaces.

AI systems that have the power to influence voters in political campaigns will not be prohibited but will be considered high-risk and therefore subject to closer scrutiny, lawmakers said.

Thursday's mandate was approved with 84 votes in favour, seven against and 12 abstentions. More than 3,000 amendments were tabled before the session, reflecting the remarkable interest in the technology.

The vote, however, is far from final: MEPs still need to approve their negotiating mandate in a plenary session, which will then be used for discussions with member states. These talks, known in Brussels parlay as "trilogues," are expected to be intense and protected, given the stakes and expectations.

This process will result in a compromise text, which will then be voted on again by the co-legislators before entering into force.

The Artificial Intelligence Act was first proposed by the Commission in April 2021, well before the market explosion of chatbots. The act imposes obligations and restrictions on AI companies according to the risk their products present to society: minimal risk, limited risk, high-risk and unacceptable.

High-risk systems will have to undergo a conformity assessment, be registered in an EU database and bear the CE marking before being put on the market. This will restart with each update.

Chatbots will not be considered high-risk, lawmakers said, despite the beefed-up provisions.

Under the amended text, companies that break the rules could face fines of up to €40 million or 7% of their worldwide annual turnover, whichever is steeper.

The EU regulation's human-centric and all-encompassing approach is considered a pioneering step in the global effort to rein in the excesses of AI, which many see as the most disruptive technology since the advent of the World Wide Web (WWW).
Newsletter

Related Articles

Saudi Press
0:00
0:00
Close
Reports in Gaza: 5 dead from the impact of aid packages dropped by the USA
Apple warns against drying iPhones with rice
China Criticizes US for Vetoing UN Ceasefire Resolution in Gaza
In a recent High Court hearing, the U.S. argued that Julian Assange endangered lives by releasing classified information.
The U.S. vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution calling for a temporary ceasefire in Gaza, instead proposing its own six-week ceasefire plan contingent upon the release of all hostages held by Hamas
Prince William Urges End to Gaza Conflict
Saudi Arabia ranks first in UN index for e-government services in MENA
Israel has gone ‘beyond self-defence’ in Gaza, says Labour’s Streeting
EU Calls for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza Conflict
Israel Records 20% Drop In GDP, War In Gaza Is The Reason
Saudi Arabia's FDI Inflows Grow with New International Standards
Venture Capitals Power Up Across MENA Region
Saudi Arabia Introduces Terms for 30-Year Income Tax Exemption for Multinational Companies
Saudi FM: Establishing Palestinian state is only pathway for Mideast stability
Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny has died at the Arctic prison colony
Elon Musk's Starlink Gets License For Israel, Parts Of Gaza
Influencers Exploit X Platform for Profit Amidst Israel-Gaza Conflict
PM Modi Announces Opening Of New CBSE Office In Dubai
International Criminal Court's Chief "Deeply Concerned" By Rafah Bombing
January Funding for MENA Startups Totals $86.5 Million
Saudi Arabia accelerates digital economy growth through Nvidia partnership
Indian female military officers commend Saudi Arabia's progress and women's empowerment
Israel unveils tunnels underneath Gaza City headquarters of UN agency for Palestinian refugees
Israel deploys new military AI in Gaza war
Egypt threatens to suspend key peace treaty if Israel pushes into Gaza border town, officials say
Israel Utilizes AI Military Technology in Gaza Conflict
Saudi Arabia Warns Of A "Humanitarian Catastrophe" If Israel Moves On Rafah
China Warns Iran to Halt Houthi Attacks or Damage Trade Ties
US University To Shut Qatar Campus Due To "Heightened Mideast Instability"
Iran-backed hackers interrupt UAE TV streaming services with deepfake news
Facebook and Instagram Ban Iran's Supreme Leader
Finnish Airline, Finnair, is voluntarily weighing passengers to better estimate flight cargo weight
U.S. Secretary of State Blinken: The Israelis underwent dehumanization on 7.10, this does not give them the right to do this to others.
Defense Technology Showcase Held in Riyadh
Saudi Arabia’s non-oil exports rise 2.5% to $6bn in November 2023: GASTAT
UK Bans Misleading "Zero Emissions" Claims for Electric Cars
Gaza's Teen Inventor Sparks Light in Displacement
Netanyahu Rejects Ceasefire Proposal, Insists On Total Victory Over Hamas
Guterres appoints independent UNRWA review panel
Private Sector Employment Hits Record High with Over 11 Million Employees in January
Rolls-Royce Executive Encourages Saudi Women to Tap into Their Inner 'Superhero' for Success in Defense Industry
Saudi Arabia launches National Academy of Vehicles and Cars
Saudi Tourism Minister Reveals Plan for 250,000 New Hotel Rooms by 2030
SAR to more than double eastern network passenger capacity with new trains deal
Saudi Arabia Enhances National Defense with New Partnerships
Saudi Aramco Maintains Arab Light Crude Pricing to Asia for March
NEOM Establishes New York Office to Support Investors
Saudi Wealth Fund Draws in Over $25 Billion Worth of Investments in Three Years, Al-Rumayyan Reveals
ZATCA Cautions Against Scammer Schemes
INTRA Defense Technologies inaugurates drone factory in Riyadh
×