Earlier this year, a Belgian man committed suicide after chatting with an AI chatbot created by Chai Research. The man’s widow says the chatbot – classified as low risk by the European Union’s draft AI regulation – encouraged the user to end his life.
The incident raises questions about whether our regulatory guardrails can keep pace with the rapid development and proliferation of new generative AI tools.
Some research scientists have long been vocal about the ethical impact of AI on society. Meredith Whittaker was part of the movement that called for Google to rethink its AI ethics council. Timnit Gebru was famously fired by Google in 2020 after co-authoring a paper highlighting the risks of large language models. And Joy Buolamwini, founder of the Algorithmic Justice League, uncovered large racial and gender bias in AI services from companies such as Microsoft, IBM, and Amazon.
While organizations largely ignored these warning calls, the ethics surrounding AI is…