Based on 25 years of experience in the AI research field, Microsoft has indicated that new laws and regulations need to be developed, specifically to govern the pool of new businesses popping up following the growing success and advances in AI technology.
The new rules are required mainly to protect employees affected by the new AI advancements, and to provide them with the necessary benefits. This subject was mentioned in a book by Microsoft called ‘The Future Computed’, and also discussed at the Switzerland World Economic Forum in Davos held in January 2018.
Microsoft places the responsibility of the protection of on-demand and gig-economy employees on the shoulders of technology companies involved in AI development. According to the technology giant, buck passing by these companies is not acceptable – they need to accept full responsibility for any possible harm resulting from any act of neglect or unreasonable practices; for example, the manufacturer of an unsafe self-driving car should be held accountable in the event of a user getting hurt or killed.
According to Brad Smith, President and Chief Legal Officer at Microsoft, the company is attempting to be “clear-eyed” when discussing the various trials and hurdles the industry will face following the development of AI. Smith is also the co-author of ‘The Future Computed’.
Some ideas of the company regarding changes made to labour regulations include the proper classification of workers and allocation of benefits such as alternative job placement after retirement, as well as healthcare for employees.
According to a University of Washington School of Law professor, Ryan Calo, advocating new rules and regulations in the AI development field is still relatively unusual. However, Microsoft is currently working towards the goal with its partners, including other technology giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon.
However, any development of new regulations is still in very early stages because AI technology itself nonetheless requires many years to reach a more mature stage. Microsoft has begun planning to codify the ethics and design regulations of their organisation. The teams responsible for this are the legal group and the AI team headed by Microsoft’s Executive Vice President, Harry Shum. This effort will prove to be helpful when the time comes for new AI-related laws to be officially created a few years down the track.
Being a responsible organisation, Microsoft foresees that many issues are likely to arise from AI advancements, including loss of jobs and users who are inconvenienced or hurt by biased and faulty AI algorithms.
As the AI algorithm developed by Microsoft is becoming increasingly sophisticated, the company is determined not to overlook the challenges that the industry is expected to face, and does not blindly attempt to win the race of AI algorithm development. Living up to the healthy vision and culture of the company, Microsoft has proven its dedication in giving back to the society.
Feel free to contact WM Reply to receive valuable advice and information on the latest products and services from Microsoft. By applying Microsoft technology to the workplace, the boost in employee efficiency will help to improve productivity and increase success.