THREAD: There’s lots of talks about artificial intelligence and ethics these days — how to come up with principles for the use of #AI, whether there should be binding laws regulating it or whether broader guidelines could be enough etc pp.
2/ I’d like to point you to an — overlooked, as often — academic paper that came out earlier this month. There’s lots of op-eds and papers written on the topic. No one has the time to read them all (and to be frank, many aren’t worth it.) This one’s different:
3/ The paper’s titled “Constitutional democracy and technology in the age of artificial intelligence” and it’s written by @PaulNemitz , a high-ranking European Commission official who was one of the architects behind Europe’s sweeping privacy law, the GDPR…
4/ His main point: AI, paired with other tech (Internet of Things etc,) will soon be at the heart of government work, so Europe must make sure rules are in place to prevent such new technologies from undermining core democratic values (human rights, democracy, the rule of law).
5/ Why you should care: Nemitz sits on the “Data Ethics Commission” of the German government. He knows how the European Commission works. And his argument is a powerful rebuke to industry arguments that loosely defined ethical principles will be enough to guide AI R&D.
6/ Nemitz — who stresses that the article “is expressing his own opinion and not necessarily that of the European Commission” — writes that lawmakers must decide ASAP “which of the challenges of AI can be safely ... left to ethics, and which ... need to be addressed by rules?” Image
7/ In other words: It’s high-time to set out what parts of AI need to be regulated via old-fashioned laws.
8/ Why the urgency? A disproportionate amount of knowledge about cutting-edge AI applications is currently concentrated in the hands of a few tech giants, sometimes referred to as the “Frightful five,” Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple and Amazon, he stresses.
9/ Nemitz doesn’t beat around the bush: “While their basic AI research may in part be publicly accessible, the much more resource intensive work on systems integration and AI applications for commercial use is taking place in a black box.”
10/ This makes such work “both a threat to democracy and to functioning markets,” he asserts. At the same time, he doesn’t buy into the variety of initiatives — most prominently perhaps the @PartnershipAI — by which private companies are drawing up their own AI guidelines.
11/ (Just today — somewhat related — news broke that Google is “issuing an open call to organizations around the world to submit their ideas for how they could use AI to help address societal challenges.”… )
12/ “In a move of genius, the corporations interested have started to finance multiple initiatives to work on ethics of AI, thus, while pretending best intentions, effectively delaying the debate and work on law for AI,” Nemitz writes. ImageImage
13/ He adds: “These powerful Internet technology corporations … have already demonstrated that they cannot be trusted to pursue public interest on a grand scale without the hard hand of the law.”
14/ There’s a good precedent for the current situation, Nemitz says: GDPR. “All arguments which are now being presented against legislation for AI have been presented ... from 2012 until 2016, in the four years of negotiations of the GDPR.” Image
15/ But “none of these arguments convinced legislators – and rightly so,” he writes. Want to dig deeper? Here’s the paper (skip pages 1-15 if you’re short on time)…

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More from @JanoschDelcker

Jul 5
This is @SQMasood

What he experienced in the streets of his hometown of Hyderabad hints at how #India uses data to surveil its 1.4 billion citizens.

And it could set precedent for how the country uses one of the most controversial technologies of our time.

Here's why: 1/9
In the spring of 2021, Masood was on his way home from buying groceries at a local market when, all of the sudden, police stopped him:
Why did the police do what they did? And what might authorities plan to do with the photo they took?

Masood has a theory. Authorities are building a database to enable surveillance using live facial recognition technology, he believes:
Read 9 tweets
Apr 20, 2021
Tomorrow, the EU will present its long-awaited proposal for laws for artificial intelligence.

Brace yourself for headlines à la “Europe gets tough on the AI industry."

But is it?
Some backdrop: The laws could make Europe the first world region with a dedicated rulebook for AI.

Officials hope that by coming up with rules early, they will set a global standard for AI regulation.
I’ve been following the genesis of the rules closely.

In my former job as Politico’s AI correspondent, I reported about every step that led to the document released tomorrow.
Read 17 tweets
Mar 24, 2021

During a court hearing in Düsseldorf today — in a case you've probably never heard of — German judges will give their opinion on whether US tech giant Facebook is abusing its dominant market position and exploiting user data.…
Here’s what you need to know: Facebook is up against the Bundeskartellamt, Germany’s competition office — and the origins of the case reach back to over five years ago.
In 2016, the authority officially started looking into how Facebook is processing user data. (Nota bene, this is *not* Germany’s data protection office. It's its competition watchdog.)
Read 10 tweets
Feb 19, 2020
The EU today unveiled its plan how to regulate artificial intelligence. Here are my key takeaways:

For now, Brussels seems to stay true to its plan to impose tough rules on 'high-risk' AI — dealing a blow to the tech industry and its lobbyists.

That means that high-risk AI systems could soon have to undergo rigorous testing before they can be deployed or sold within the EU's vast internal market (which is worth billions), according to the plan. /2
“So-called high-risk AI — this is AI that potentially interferes with people’s rights — have to be tested and certified before they reach our single market,” European Commission President @vonderleyen said when she presented the document. /3
Read 10 tweets
Feb 16, 2019
At this year's @MunSecConf #MSC2019 , Angela Merkel just suggested something that didn't get much attention but is remarkable:

During Q&A, she said there could be more to the #FridaysForFuture protests by schoolchildren demanding action on climate change than meets the eye.
“In Germany now, children are protesting for climate protection.... But you can't imagine that all German children, after years, and without any outside influence, suddenly hit on the idea that they have to take part in this process."…
Merkel's statement followed her warning that, “Europe has opponents. This hybrid warfare from Russia can be felt every day in every European country.”
Read 6 tweets
Dec 24, 2018
A "new Cold War" has broken out, analysts on both side of the Atlantic say.

This time, it's over information technology — but, like back in the old Cold War days, the key battleground is, once again, Berlin.

Here's why [Thread]
The backdrop: The Trump administration is on a global crusade against Chinese tech giant Huawei, and has spent the past few months pressing its international allies to take a stronger stance against the company. /2
In Europe, this is pitting countries, which remain divided over the issue, against each other. (Read @laurenscerulus 's analysis for more:… ) /3
Read 11 tweets

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