Sep 15, 2023 - Economy

AI regulation is within sight — with an eye on preserving innovation

Illustration of a roll of red tape in a tape dispenser.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

AI regulation is within sight but it could have less of a limiting effect on innovation than some have feared.

Why it matters: Regulation can make it hard for all but the biggest companies to grow, confined by industry rules that are shaped at times by incumbents.

  • Big banks, for example, have only gotten bigger since the Dodd-Frank Act.
  • Internet privacy rules introduced through GDPR had an impact on dealmaking.

Yet, but: Big Tech's plea for AI regulation this week was met with agreement in D.C. and awareness that there should be a level playing field.

  • "Open source democratizes access to these tools," Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at the Senate's AI Insight forum Wednesday.
  • There was also acknowledgment by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer in a meeting with Axios that future forums on AI would feature smaller firms as the government works to encourage innovation.

💭 Our thought bubble, via Ryan: Raising compliance costs can help the biggest players, but because AI tools are being developed so quickly, it will be hard to predict how patterns from past regulatory enforcement may apply to innovation in the future.

Go deeper: Exclusive survey: Experts favor new U.S. agency to govern AI

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