OpenAI boss downplays fears ChatGPT maker could exit Europe over AI rules

LONDON: Open AI CEO Sam Altman Friday played down concerns that the ChatGPT The maker could leave the European Union if it cannot comply with the bloc’s tough new artificial intelligence rules, coming after a senior official reprimanded it for comments raising such a possibility.
Altman is traveling across Europe on a world tour to meet officials and promote his artificial intelligence company, which has sparked a worldwide frenzy.
During a stop this week in London, he said OpenAI could leave if the rules on artificial intelligence the EU is drawing up are too strict. It sparked a pointed response on social media from EU Commissioner Thierry Breton, accusing the company of blackmail.
Breton, head of digital policy, linked to a Financial Times article citing Altman saying that OpenAI “will try to comply, but if we can’t comply, we will go out of business”.
Altman sought to calm the waters a day later, tweeting, “A very productive week of conversations in Europe on how best to regulate AI! we are delighted to continue operating here and of course have no intention of leaving.
The European Union is at the forefront of global efforts to develop safeguards for artificial intelligence, with its AI law nearing completion after years of work.
The rapid rise of general-purpose AI chatbots like ChatGPT caught EU officials off guard, and they rushed to add provisions covering so-called generative AI systems, which can produce conversational responses , essays, images and more in a compelling human-like way in response to user questions.
“There is no point in trying to blackmail – claiming that by developing a clear framework, Europe is delaying the deployment of #generativeAI,” Breton said in his tweet. He added that the EU aims to “help companies in their preparation” for the AI ​​law.
Altman tweeted that his European tour includes Warsaw, Poland; Munich, Germany; Paris; Madrid; Lisbon, Portugal; and London. Brussels, seat of the European Union, was not mentioned.
He met world leaders, including the British Prime Minister Rishi SunakFrench President Emmanuel Macron, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
Tech company bosses have engaged in the debate over whether and how to regulate artificial intelligence.
Microsoft Chairman Brad Smith unveiled a blueprint for public AI governance on Thursday.
Altman told congressional lawmakers this month that AI should be regulated by a US or global agency because increasingly powerful systems will require government intervention to reduce their risks.
Altman was mobbed by students when he appeared in a ‘fireside chat’ at University College London on Wednesday.
He told the audience that the “right answer” to AI regulation is “probably something between the traditional European, British approach and the traditional American approach”.
“I think you really don’t want to over-regulate this until you know what form the technology will take,” Altman said.
It’s still possible to come up with “some sort of global set of standards and enforcement,” he said, adding that AI regulation was a “recurring topic” during his world tour, which included also stops in Toronto, Rio de Janeiro and Lagos, Nigeria.


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