What’s going on:
In Microsoft’s latest layoff of 10,000 employees, a whole team dedicated to safeguarding their AI products against any potential social harms was cut, according to Ars Technica.
Why it matters:
Ex-staff have stated that the ethics and society team was a crucial element in Microsoft’s attempt to lower the dangers posed by using OpenAI technology in their products. Prior to its dissolution, the team had established a complete “responsible innovation toolkit” to assist Microsoft engineers in predicting any harms that AI could bring about — and then mitigate them.
Despite the ethics and society team’s size dwindling (before the layoff), Microsoft had no intention of eliminating them. Then on March 6th, during a Zoom meeting, the few members remaining were abruptly informed that it was “business critical” to disband the team for good.
How it’ll impact the future:
AI technology may still be in its early stages, but it has already become infamous for stirring up conspiracies, disseminating false information, and even slandering people.
More and more advancements are being made to this new tech, but it will need human interference and regulation for some time more.