‘Elections are going to be a mess’ due to A.I.: Ex-Google CEO Schmidt

on Jun27
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Eric Schmidt, former CEO and Chairman, Google, speaks during the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California on May 2, 2023.

Patrick T. Fallon | AFP | Getty Images

Misinformation around the 2024 election will be rampant as new tools have made advanced artificial intelligence more accessible, according to Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google who co-founded Schmidt Futures.

“The 2024 elections are going to be a mess because social media is not protecting us from false generated AI,” Schmidt told Andrew Ross Sorkin on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Monday. “They’re working on it, but they haven’t solved it yet. And in fact, the trust and safety groups are getting made smaller, not larger.”

While there’s broad concern about the long-term impacts of AI on society, including the potential for the technology to gain human-like abilities, Schmidt said that “the short-term danger is misinformation.”

Google recently decided to stop removing false claims about widespread fraud in the 2020 U.S. election from YouTube. It said the decision sought to balance its goals of protecting the community and being a forum for open discussion.

Asked about the policy change, Schmidt said that social media should allow for “free speech for humans, not computers.”

“What social media should do is mark all the content, know who the users are, and hold people accountable if they violate the law,” Schmidt said. “It doesn’t solve the problem of, you and I disagree on facts, but at least it establishes a basis that these are humans who are making these claims.”

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