When it comes to Artificial Intelligence (AI), many people may think towards Terminator-style apocalypse scenarios or perhaps dangerous, advanced systems like Marvel Cinematic Universe villain Ultron.
Yet, AI is not a force bent our wiping out Humanity, rather it is a far-reaching tool that affects every single industry on the planet – and offers a glimpse into the future of technology.
In the latest episode of Ewropej, Lovin Malta spoke to Maltese MEPs Alex Agius Saliba and Roberta Metsola about what MEPs are doing to fight for regulation and proper checks and balances for AI – while also going to the streets of Valletta to hear how people really feel about AI.
“Artificial Intelligence is a very important sector”, Agius Saliba explained, “It is an important sector when considering our fundamental rights and it is also very important for Malta’s technological advancement. Oftentimes, artificial intelligence is already being worked on and used in the background without many of us noticing”.
The MEP went on to explain that AI can be used to form “our social and political opinions, just like when we use digital platforms like Facebook”. It is something that we all have experienced at least once: adverts and stories that are specifically targeted to us as individuals.
“This happens after each and every one of us has been profiled”
In general, the people we asked about AI technologies knew mostly the dangers of AI, knowing about the dangers rather than the benefits of this ground-breaking technology.
While some highlighted that this was the generation of the future, many did voice their hesitations of the risks that can come with it. Many also were not aware of what our MEPs are doing to fight for protections with AI technology in the first-ever legal framework on the technology.
Metsola emphasises that “ethical use of AI is important”, noting that she wants to see out of “European regulation is the ability for our scientists, engineers and companies to harness all the power of AI for good while mitigating the risks”.
“The European Union has the potential to be at the forefront of the global regulatory challenge that will define how the world develops and implements AI technologies, and this is why we must seize the moment now.”
This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
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