Meta Platforms Inc. has, in a recent disclosure, confirmed restructuring the Responsible AI team in a strategic shift to the Mark Zuckerbeg-led social media giant. Meta move contrasts the loud calls for safety urging tech companies to slow the development of advanced artificial intelligence (AI).
Meta Replaces Centralized Responsible AI with Distributed Approach
Meta restructuring portrays a devotion to broadening the efforts in a move described in The Information publication to mirror a distributed approach. The move contrasts the growing concerns regulators express, increasingly scrutinizing AI’s role and impact in society.
Meta informed The Information of undergoing integration of the members who constituted the Responsible AI unit into separate divisions. The distribution across the company is a decision embedding AI safety considerations directly into developing its core products and technologies.
The changes effected by Meta coincide with a period when the generative AI impact is raising alarms globally. Individuals are worried about deficient privacy, while leaders fear a potential AI-driven apocalypse.
Meta assured that the decision to dissolve the Responsible AI unit and disperse the members across the company hardly implies it denounces responsible AI development. Instead, it restated the continuity of investing in safe and responsible development across all AI-affiliated products.
Meta Dissolves Responsible AI Team as Former Researcher Admits Potential Misuse of AI-powered Technologies
Meta spokesperson explained that dispersing the team members spreads the responsible efforts as opposed to running a centralized entity overseeing ethical AI development. David Evan Harris, who previously worked as a researcher at Meta, expressed concerns regarding the potential misuse of AI-powered technologies.
Harris recounted the experience in executing tasks involving civic integrity within Facebook. He indicated that managing the research teams towards responsible AI yielded an opportunity to chronicle potential AI harms. Also, the task involved exploring viable mechanisms to make society fairer and safer.
Harris admitted in a recent publication by The Guardian that witnessing how the employer’s systems could leverage the AI systems to facilitate discrimination, establish racist associations, and run gender-based exclusion in job listings.
Harris warned that deepfakes pose mounting dangers amid the susceptibility of open-source large language models (LLMs) to malicious actors exploiting them to convey misinformation. The now dismantled team at Meta was established primarily to avert such things from occurring.
The restructuring executed by Meta coincides with the social media giant’s initiative to harmonize operations under the ‘Year of Efficiency’ strategy. Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg explained that dissolving the Response AI team constitutes a response to the growing essence of generative AI tools within the tech sector, where it has committed huge investment.
Meta recently accelerated its activity in the AI segment to unveil a suite of generative AI tools targeting advertisers. It affirms Meta’s commitment to roll out AI-driven solutions, particularly by adding the popular open-source LLM model Llama 2 to its portfolio. The product involves a text-to-video generator alongside a new AI assistant. Meta is rumored to be preparing for Llama 3 in 2024.
AI Spaces Witnesses Weekend Drama as Board Ousts Altman From OpenAI
Meanwhile, the artificial intelligence sector is set to witness significant development following the dramatic ouster of Sam Altman from the OpenAI’s chief executive role. Altman departed the firm behind the popular ChatGPT alongside OpenAI co-founder Greg Brockman.
The duo was forced out of the company they co-founded by the board that declared it was aligning OpenAI’s mission with safe AI development. The move allowed chief scientist Ilya Stutskever to assume a critical role in overseeing the transition.
The weekend drama saw industry observers attribute the departure of OpenAI’s co-founders to conflict. Such arises from conflicting stances by individuals seeking slowed AI development with parties pressing for accelerated rollout.
OpenAI has since then appointed Emmett Shear to steer the Microsoft-backed OpenAI post-Altman removal. The former Twitch chief executive ruled out Sam’s removal as caused by disagreement on safety.
Surprisingly, Altman and Brockman would quickly find suitors in Microsoft that, through its chief executive Satya Nadella’s announcement on Monday, November 20, confirmed hiring the duo. Besides, Nadella hinted at establishing an advanced AI research venture that Microsoft would commit resources to Altman and Brockman.
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