DECEMBER 9 2023.
The EU becomes the very first continent to set clear rules for the use of AI. The AI Act shall facilitate EU start-ups and researchers to lead the global AI race. EU legislators agreed on a two-tier approach, with (1) transparency requirements for all general-purpose AI models (such as ChatGPT) and (2) stronger requirements for powerful models with systemic impacts across the EU. The rules shall implement safeguards for the use of AI technology while at the same time avoiding an excessive burden for companies. Among the new rules, legislators agreed to strict restrictions on the use of facial recognition technology except for narrowly defined law enforcement exceptions. The legislation also includes bans on the use of AI for “social scoring” — using metrics to establish how upstanding someone is — and AI systems that appear to manipulate human behaviour to circumvent their free will. The use of AI to exploit those vulnerable because of their age, disability or economic situation is also banned. Companies that fail to comply with the rules face fines of €35mn or 7 per cent of global revenue.