On November 30, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) hosted a forum to discuss artificial intelligence (“AI”) and machine learning. Chairman Ajit Pai moderated the forum’s two main panels “What Is AI and Where Is It Taking Us?” and “Applications of AI and Machine Learning in the Here and Now,” which invited academics, industry professionals, and government affairs specialists to weigh in on the evolving AI ecosystem.
Chairman Pai made clear in his opening remarks that the purpose of the forum was not to initiate AI regulation at the FCC. He stated: “It’s important to note that this event is about discussion and demonstration. It is not about the FCC dipping its toes in the regulatory waters. These are emerging technologies. And when dealing with emerging technologies, I believe that one of the foundational principles for government should be regulatory humility.” This sentiment of sharing information about new AI issues and best practices was lauded by many of the panelists as the correct approach in the sphere. They explained that to create “AI regulation” would be a particularly challenging endeavor because AI has so many different applications across all different sectors.
Although the Chairman is not looking to AI regulation at the FCC, he does see an important role for the agency to play: facilitating the deployment of 5G. The promise of 5G to advances in AI became a consistent theme among the Chairman, the panelists, and Commissioners Carr and Rosenworcel. The Commissioners delivered remarks at the forum as well. Continue Reading