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Decoding Biden's AI Executive Order for Safe and Trustworthy Innovation

Metal Statute of lady of justice with scales with robot hand that scales are dangling from and robot arm on the other side and background of coding screen

As a tech lawyer working with companies both providing and using AI, here is my break down and thoughts on some of the key items from the Executive Order:

🔐 AI Safety and Security Standards: Transparency is the name of the game. Requiring AI developers to spill the beans on safety tests and share critical info is a bold move. And while keep cutting-edge tech safe, secure, and trustworthy is important, I do think required disclosures should be sufficiently limited to avoid businesses operating in the space having to disclose confidential or proprietary information or to undertake unduly burdensome activities.

🌐 Equity and Civil Rights: Addressing algorithmic discrimination is an important item on a societal level. Providing guidance to landlords, federal programs, and contractors is a step in the right direction. From a legal standpoint, it's crucial to keep the legal landscape fair and just, especially as AI plays a bigger role in critical decision-making that effects people rights and livelihoods.

🛡️ Privacy: Calling for Congress to create federal data privacy legislation is music to my ears. Even putting aside AI, having federal privacy legislation will create a uniform approach to privacy in the US rather than the piecemeal state legislation we are getting now. Further, a uniform approach will give individuals across the country the same protections and will make it easier for businesses operating in the space to comply with data privacy laws.

💼 Workers: AI is rapidly changing jobs and the workplace and the change will continue at an exponential rate. Taking steps to mitigate harms, maximize benefits, and study impacts on jobs are important considerations to make the economic transition for workers and employers easier.

🚀 Innovation and Competition: The focus on research, innovation, and small business support is great to see as it will help foster a competitive AI ecosystem in which small players have a chance. I love seeing all the new businesses getting into the space!

🌍 International Action: Collaborating internationally and setting international AI standards sounds great as it would put all countries on the same foot and allow for a cohesive global framework for responsible AI development. However, I think it will be difficult to actually get international cohesion as there are potential competitive advantages available to countries that do not abide by such restrictions.

🤖 Government Use of AI: Issuing guidance for government’s use of AI and hiring AI talent is a good step to try to modernize our government’s relationship with innovative technologies, but there is definitely more to be done!


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