05-17-2023 icon

OpenAI CEO calls for AI regulatory agency

By Lucy Adegbe

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman went to Washington to discuss artificial intelligence with U.S. policymakers. For the second time, Altman appeared before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary alongside IBM’s Chief Privacy & Trust Officer Christina Montgomery and Gary Marcus, Professor Emeritus at New York University.

When Louisiana Senator John Kennedy asked how they should regulate A.I., Altman said a government office should be formed and be put in charge of setting standards.

“I would form a new agency that licenses any effort above a certain scale of capabilities, and that can take that license away and ensure compliance with safety standards,” Altman said, adding that the would-be agency should require independent audits of any A.I. technology.

“Not just from the company or the agency, but experts who can say the model is or isn’t in compliance with the state and safety thresholds and these percentages of performance on question X or Y,” he said.

While Altman said the government should regulate the technology, he balked at the idea of leading the agency himself. “I love my current job,” he said.

Using the FDA as an example, Professor Marcus said there should be a safety review for artificial intelligence that’s similar to how drugs are reviewed before being allowed to go to market.

“If you’re going to introduce something to 100 million people, somebody has to have their eyeballs on it,” Professor Marcus added.