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US ramps up oversight of major AI players: report

By AFP

June 6, 2024 11:17 PM


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Top US antitrust enforcers are moving forward with investigations into the roles played by Microsoft, OpenAI and Nvidia in the artificial intelligence boom, according to a report on Thursday.

The rapid development of generative AI since the 2022 release of ChatGPT has raised concerns over whether these three companies will play an outsized role in the new sector.

Antitrust regulators in Europe, Britain and now the United States have committed to taking a closer look at the industry, hoping to avoid the emergence of a single dominant player that would dictate the technology's future.

According to the New York Times, the US Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have agreed on how they will divide the work in the investigations of the AI giants.

Such an agreement is a key signal that the US government is getting serious about investigating the industry.

Previous investigations of major tech platforms, which have evolved into landmark lawsuits, were similarly divided in 2019, with the FTC taking on Meta and Amazon and the Justice Department going after Google and Apple.

In the latest deal, investigators from the Justice Department will be responsible for looking into Nvidia, the AI chip designer whose central role in the AI frenzy saw its market value soar above $3 trillion Thursday -- higher than Apple's.

The FTC meanwhile will handle a probe into OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT, and its close relationship with Microsoft, which has become the world's biggest company when measured by stock price, largely on its embrace of AI.

The FTC had already opened an inquiry into how major tech firms were investing in AI startups in January, requesting further information from the companies.

When contacted by AFP, the FTC, DOJ, and Nvidia declined to comment. Microsoft and OpenAI did not respond to requests for comment.


AFP


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