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Meta AI logo is seen in this illustration taken September 28, 2023

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

AI labels are coming to Instagram and Facebook. Will they work?

Sir Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and Threads, announced Tuesday their platforms would begin labeling AI-generated images.

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Taylor Swift at a premiere of "Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour" in Los Angeles, California, in October 2023.

REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

Hard Numbers: Not-so-Swift, Job cuts, Microsoft’s milestone, Meta goes to Indiana, Blocking bots

45 million: AI-generated pornographic images of Taylor Swift circulated around social media sites last week, spurring Swift’s team to contemplate legal action. On X, formerly Twitter, one such post had 45 million views before it was finally removed for violating the site’s rules.

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Ian Bremmer: On AI regulation, governments must step up to protect our social fabric
AI might succeed where social media failed but... | Ian Bremmer | Global Stage

Ian Bremmer: On AI regulation, governments must step up to protect our social fabric

Seven leading AI companies, including Google, Meta and Microsoft, committed to managing risks posed by the technology, after holding discussions with the US government last May—a landmark move that Ian Bremmer sees as a win.

Speaking in a GZERO Global Stage discussion from the 2024 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Eurasia Group and GZERO Media President Ian Bremmer calls tech firms' ongoing conversations with regulators on AI guardrails a "win" but points out that a big challenge with regulation will be that there is no one-size-fits-all strategy, as AI impacts different sectors differently. For example, ensuring AI can’t be used to make a weapon is important, “but I want to test these things on societies and on children before we roll them out,” he says.

“We would've benefited from that with social media,” he added.

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Courtesy of Midjourney

Why Meta opened up

Last week, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced his intention to build artificial general intelligence, or AGI — a standard whereby AI will have human-level intelligence in all fields – and said Meta will have 350,000 high-powered NVIDIA graphics chips by the end of the year.

Zuckerberg isn’t alone in his intentions – Meta joins a long list of tech firms trying to build a super-powered AI. But he is alone in saying he wants to make Meta’s AGI open-source. “Our long-term vision is to build general intelligence, open source it responsibly, and make it widely available so everyone can benefit,” Zuckerberg said. Um, everyone?

Critics have serious concerns with the advent of the still-hypothetical AGI. Publishing such technology on the open web is a whole other story. “In the wrong hands, technology like this could do a great deal of harm. It is so irresponsible for a company to suggest it.” University of Southampton professor Wendy Hall, who advises the UN on AI issues, told The Guardian. She added that it is “really very scary” for Zuckerberg to even consider it.

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Elon Musk is seen displayed on a mobile device with the Twitter and X logos in the illustration.

Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto

Hard Numbers: xAI's Musk money, Investing in Replicate, Undressing AI, AFL-CIO-Google?, NVIDIA’s big gamble

$1 billion: In a bid to compete with the likes of OpenAI, Google, and Microsoft, Elon Musk is trying to raise $1 billion in equity investment – he’s already raised $135 million from investors – for his AI company, xAI. While the world’s richest man has tweeted that the company “is not raising money right now,” a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission says otherwise.
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Logos of mobile apps, Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and Netflix displayed on a screen.

REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Canada averts a Google news block, US bills in the works

Last week, the Trudeau government reached a deal with Google that will see the web giant pay roughly CA$100 million a year to support media outlets in Canada. The agreement is part of the Online News Act, a law that requires big tech outlets to compensate the journalism industry. It’s also an important moment in the ongoing, cross-border battle to regulate these companies.
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Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

REUTERS/Blair Gable

Google throws Trudeau a lifeline

Canada’s Online News Act, introduced last summer to force revenue-sharing on tech giants, backfired badly when Meta decided to block Canadian news outlets from their platforms rather than pay up.

Bill C-18 and the tech giants’ response to it spelled trouble for a media industry already in crisis – traffic and revenue plummeted. It was bad news for PM Justin Trudeau, whose revenue-sharing law was intended to improve things for media outlets, not make things worse, and it opened him to criticism that he was incompetently wrecking an industry he was trying to help.

But this week brought a turn in fortune. Canada reached a deal with Google that will see the tech giant compensate Canadian news outlets for linking to their stories. The deal, which requires Alphabet to pay between $100 million and $172 million a year, is a huge relief to Trudeau after months of withering criticism.

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Meta and Facebook logos shown in an illustration.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/

New rules for political ads

Meta announced last week that it will require disclosures for any political ads made using generative AI, and that applies to political advertisers around the world — not just in the US. The company also said it wouldn’t lend its own AI software to those marketing a litany of ads concerning politics, social issues, health, housing, or financial services.
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